While I’ve argued repeatedly, that, at the margins, there are Trump supporters who can be peeled off (either switching or sitting out), many of them seem to be pretty far gone. For those who don’t know what Pizzagate is, here is a summary:
The theory of the Pizzagate true believers is a work in progress, but the gist is that close allies of Hillary Clinton are using secret areas of Chevy Chase’s Comet Ping Pong to rape children as part of a broader child trafficking operation in which “pizza” is used as code for kids. It first appeared on the politics message board of 4chan, a hive of internet trolling, metastasized on the biggest pro-Donald Trump subreddit, served as a convenient distraction for institutions loyal to Turkish President Recep Erdogan, and is now percolating on forums across the internet, as self-identified “investigators” comb the web for further clues. In the process, the frenzied pedo-truthers have published the personal information of numerous private citizens and bombarded their social media accounts, homes, and places of business with graphic threats.
And a bit more:
For the uninitiated, Pizzagate is ia debunked conspiracy theory that spawned in the depths of online message board 4chan. Pizzagate features an eclectic and burgeoning cast of characters including Hillary Clinton, Podesta, Satanists, and various punk bands. Even local events blog Brightest Young Things and Washingtonian magazine were accused of being involved. According to supporters, the unassuming Chevy Chase pizzeria headquarters an international child sex trafficking ring that serves the elite…
Ultimately, someone went to the pizza joint with guns and fired off some rounds (no one was hurt).
Needless to say, this is bonkers. Yet this doesn’t do the lunacy justice. The first version of the ‘theory’ had the child sex trafficking ring operating out of the basement. Comet Ping Pong doesn’t have a basement. So the story adapted, and there was a secret network of tunnels leading to other restaurants and stores in the neighborhood (which were also harassed).
All of this is prelude to this statement by a ‘moderate’ Trumpist (boldface mine):
“Before there was any investigation into whether or not the [Podesta] emails had any validity … that guy shows up with a gun,” local Dick Laughter says. “No one should threaten someone else with a gun, that’s taking the law into your own hands, that’s being a genuinely shitty person. But it also turned this whole event into just that.”
Laughter, who wore a “Make America Great Again” hat, says he stopped by Comet just to see what was going on. While he doesn’t think the pizzeria housed anything like a child trafficking ring, he still wants the FBI to investigate for other illegal activity.
Let’s be honest, if they stripped Comet down to the frame and used ground-penetrating radar on the floor, this guy still wouldn’t be happy. He knows there’s something wrong going on.
This has nothing to do with ideology. It is best thought of as a mass communicable psychotic break.