Supporters of the QAnon conspiracy theory — the cult followers of the personality cult of Donald Trump — were out in force at President Donald Trump’s unhinged campaign rally in Michigan on Thursday, where the demagogue-in-chief hailed victory over a “deep state” of officials he claims is out to topple him from power. QAnon conspiracy theorists turned out in force at Trump’s Michigan rally as he hailed victory over ‘deep state’:
Footage taken at the rally in Grand Rapids — where Trump claimed that Special Counsel Robert Mueller‘s report exonerated him from accusations of collusion— showed thousands of supporters lining up to get into the event, many wearing clothing emblazoned with “Q” and shouting QAnon slogans.
Fact Checks: NY Times, Trump’s Inaccurate Claims on Mueller, Health Care and the Great Lakes, CNN: Fact-checking Trump’s Michigan rally, Politifact: Fact-checking Donald Trump’s Grand Rapids rally after the Mueller probe, FactCheck.org: Trump’s Great Lakes Whoppers. Yet Trump’s sycophant cult followers hang on his every word and unquestionably cheer his multitude of lies.
NBC News reporter Ben Collins, who posted the video, tweeted: “I’ve been covering QAnon for a year, and the amount of pro-Q people in this video from yesterday’s Trump rally line in Grand Rapids is absolutely shocking.”
In a picture of the rally tweeted by Trump himself, one supporter appears to hold aloft a “Q” sign amid a sea of signs reading “jobs.”
George Conway, a Republican attorney and prominent Trump critic, tweeted that the number of QAnon adherents attending the Grand Rapids rally was “jaw-dropping.”
And what are the “Big Tech” social media companies doing to contain this cray-cray conspiracy theory/disinformation propaganda campaign? NOTHING. For all they know, this is another Russian dezinformatsiya propaganda campaign.
What is QAnon?
The QAnon conspiracy emerged on messaging boards 4chan and 8chan in late 2017, and has spread among a fringe of supporters of the president.
They believe that a top government official, codenamed Q, is responsible for a series of cryptic clues left on the messaging boards — with a large and obsessive online following devoted to unraveling them.
Supporters believe that the clues expose a “deep state” plot by intelligence officials, senior Democrats and Hollywood stars running a secret child abuse ring.
They also claim that Trump and Mueller are actually working together to break up the elite child abuse ring, and that Mueller’s probe into the Trump campaign’s ties to Russia is just cover.
It’s not just grassroots supporters of the president, but celebrities and social media activists who have been gripped by the conspiracy.
The closest historical analogy to what is happening now is Benito Mussolini’s blackshirts and Adolph Hitler’s brownshirts, an all-volunteer paramilitary wing of the Fascist Party loyal to their “Dear Leader” to whom they swore allegiance.
QAnon has not yet adopted a uniform, other than the identifying “Q” and red MAGA hats — see GOP media consultant Rick Wilson, Red Hats, Brown Shirts — and Donald Trump has not yet called on his cult followers to engage in acts of violence on his behalf as his storm troopers. But Trump has all too frequently suggested that he could. Trump Suggests His Supporters Could Turn to Political Violence If His Opponents ‘Go to a Certain Point’.
These QAnon cult followers of the personality cult of Donald Trump are loyal to their “Dear Leader” and swear their allegiance to him — not to the Constitution or to the country or to the flag (see the Confederate battle flag in the photo above).
Prosecutors allege QAnon has inspired violent plots. A man arrested in a self-armored truck packed with weapons near Arizona’s Hoover Dam last July was allegedly obsessed with the conspiracy. See, Man who blocked traffic on Hoover Dam bridge wanted release of government report.
QAnon is also responsible for the “Pizzagate” conspiracy and subsequent fire set at the D.C.-area pizza shop, Comet Ping Pong, in February of this year. Fire at ‘pizzagate’ shop reignites conspiracy theorists who find a home on Facebook.
And remember the “mail bomber” Cesar Sayoc last fall? QAnon went nuts with conspiracy theories and assertions of “false flag” operations repeated by Trump allies in the conservative media entertainment complex. Trump Allies Insist Bomb Threats Against Clinton, Obama, CNN Are ‘Pure BS,’ a ‘False Flag’.
At Thursday’s rally, Trump singled out the “deep state” as one of the enemies who had unsuccessfully sought to derail his presidency with allegations of collusion — in what could be interpreted as a nod to his more conspiratorially-minded supporters.
Trump also boasted to his supporters that Mueller’s report showed the plots by the “deep state to overturn the results of the 2016 election have failed.”
These QAnon followers of the personality cult of Donald trump are mentally unstable, easily manipulated, and potentially dangerous. They are led by a demagogue who is mentally unstable, who seeks to manipulate them, and who is in fact dangerous.
We are living in dangerous times.