Watching the slow-motion public meltdown is fascinating in a sort of macabre way. Amanda asks:
In all seriousness, it’s genuinely hard to believe that these people could be for real. I have no idea how it got this bad.
I do! The Mad Biologist has an answer: the wingnuts have decided that Republican rallies are a ‘safe space.’
Anyone who has been involved in any kind of community organizing has probably lived through the sorry experience of watching an organization be taken over by nutters who are more interested in using that organization for their needs (including psychological) and agendas than the original goal of the organization. (The crazy far left–all twenty of them–did this to the broader Left–and fortunately we’ve barfed ’em back up). Then the nutters attract more nutters in an accumulation of nuttiness.
This process doesn’t happen right away: this requires a critical mass of nutters to kickstart the whole.
And this is precisely what has happened to the Republican Party. Since the Nixon era they have embraced some of the most loathsome and batshit lunatic elements of American society. The Republican Party has chased away sane people (you know, the ones who don’t think Obama is a socialist, even if they don’t like his policies at all). The Republican Party has finally reached that tipping point. At some stage, this actually becomes a gravitational force that attracts other lunatics–and where exactly did you think the paranoids who thought that BILL CLINTON”S PENIS MURDERED VINCE FOSTER!!!! were going to go? In essence, they now feel that a political rally is a ‘safe space’, where the crazies can fell safe spouting their lunacy and hatred in public.
Fortunately, for America, it’s not a safe space. Now, we can see the lunacy on full display.