On Wednesday night, a CNN panel took aim at the thousands of Trump supporters who attend the rallies.
Earlier this month, Adam Serwer of The Atlantic made the following argument in a column about how “cruelty” binds President Donald Trump and his base:
Trump’s only true skill is the con; his only fundamental belief is that the United States is the birthright of straight, white, Christian men, and his only real, authentic pleasure is in cruelty. It is that cruelty, and the delight it brings them, that binds the most ardent supporters to him, in shared scorn for those they hate and fear: immigrants, black voters, feminists, and treasonous white men who empathize with any of those who would steal their birthright.”
Serwer offered a clarification to Don Lemon.
“I want to just clarify that I’m talking about the people who go to these rallies and they cheer as the president holds up a victim of sexual assault and jeers and mocks her,” Serwer said.
“I’m glad you said that,” Lemon responded, “because you’re not referring to every Trump supporter.”
“No, I’m talking to a very specific subset of Trump voters,” Serwer continued. “I think that anybody who has ever been the new kid at a school knows how this works. Everybody gangs up on you. They’re mean to you and they become closer friends and you’re the person on the outside. And it’s basically that dynamic only it’s in national politics. And it’s something that’s embedded in human nature, but until now we haven’t had a politician who revels in exploiting that part of human nature. And I think it’s taking the country to a dark place.”
CNN commentator Amanda Carpenter thought that Serwer “hit the nail on the head,” pointing to conservatives who champion “liberal tears” and that cruelty “has gone mainstream.” Bakari Sellers argued that if “white evangelical men” don’t speak out against it, nothing will change.
Watch the clip above, via CNN.
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