Trump in Dallas: O’Reilly History Tour loaded with conspiracy theories

0


When I arrived at the American Airlines Center in Dallas, Texas for the “History Tour” featuring former President Donald Trump and former Fox News host Bill O’Reilly, I quickly understood this who was waiting for me. Huge “Trump 2020” and “Let’s Go Brandon” flags and banners lined the plaza outside the arena, where conservative merchandise vendors have settled down to sell their wares. Between the vendors stood a woman in an American flag jumpsuit holding a poster of Trump’s face inside a Q, next to a garishly painted truck advertising a group s opposing the fluoridation of water.

While I was in line, a woman in front of me asked if I was a Dallas resident and if it was safe for her and her husband to walk eight blocks from their car to dinner after bed. from the sun. I told him yes, that Dallas is a relatively safe city, and that they would be fine. “But what about these paid agitators,” she replied with deep concern. “I know they’re from out of town.”

No agitator showed up, it must be said, paid or not.

The outside scene was indicative of the overall tone and tenor of the event, except for the part where the crowd was pounding around a few beach balls while Elton John’s “Tiny Dancer” yelled back. -plan. No one could have predicted it.

Facilitated by O’Reilly, the “History Tour,” which began in Florida last week, provided an opportunity for Trump to offer a myriad of groundless, entirely undisputed conspiracy theories. Take for example O’Reilly’s opening question: Is the Democratic Party socialist? “I think they are beyond socialism,” Trump said gleefully. “I’m talking about the swear word C.” Never mind that the Democratic Party fails to adopt its own platform due to the recent intransigence of Senator Joe Manchin – who has been praised by name by O’Reilly and Trump.

The rest of the event went more or less the same way. For a few hours, the two hucksters described their revisionist history of the Trump administration, the election, and the current state of the nation to an audience that clung to their every word. Trump played the conspiratorial stunts that his base pleases: the election was rigged (“That’s all Democrats are good for, politics and election stealing”); President Joe Biden intentionally encourages criminals to cross the border (“The toughest, meanest people in prison are thrown here”); Covid-19 was an intentional biological attack from China (“What came out of the Wuhan lab”); and January 6 was justified but the violence had nothing to do with these supporters (“BLM and Antifa were in the crowd”).

Steven monacelli

The event wasn’t exactly sold out – I switched from my cheap seats in the second section to a half-empty center row not far from the stage to get a better view – but the excitement in the hall was palpable. People sang along to the music in the hours leading up to the start of the conversation. The entire crowd rose for a performance of “How Great Thou Art”, a Christian hymn. Some people came out dressed for church, possibly because they had just attended the Christmas service at First Baptist Dallas Church, where Trump was featured as a special guest.

“Now you may be wondering why not just have [Trump] Speak now? “Said Pastor Robert Jeffress at the start of the service.” I’ll tell you why. Because I know you all! And as soon as he was done, you would all be out of here before my sermon, and even more important before the offering, so we won’t let you do that.

Otherwise, the crowd looked like your typical Trump rally. Lots of empty seats, but a great crowd for the Sunday before Christmas. There was no shortage of hats, shirts and jackets bearing a variety of slogans – Trump 2024, Let’s Go Brandon, I Identify As Vaccinated, Trump-themed Christmas sweaters, and more. Among the crowd were members of the controversial JFK-obsessed QAnon cult led by Michael Protzman who locked themselves in the Hyatt Regency for more than two months, where they recently hosted an alternative health briefing (including the content does not bear repeat). They didn’t all dress up in the same absurd shirts or make a major scene on Sunday afternoon, choosing instead to wear more modest threads and blend in with the rest of the crowd. But they drew the attention of a local YouTuber to the conspiracy theory that confronted Protzman, regarding all the predictions that went unsuccessful, during a live broadcast (the content of which doesn’t deserve to be say again).

On occasion, and somewhat surprisingly, O’Reilly asked a difficult question. “Do you believe in climate change? O’Reilly asked Trump directly, giving the former president enough leeway to spread misinformation, doubts and absurd ambiguities. Even when O’Reilly asked Trump the same question about climate change a second time after failing to get a straight answer, he allowed Trump to chat. Trump rarely stuck to the question asked, pivoting and moving quickly from topic to topic, and no matter how absurd the chain was, he often found a way to attack China or Russia.

On several occasions, the crowd audibly responded to the discussion. Whenever Trump leaned into conspiratorial or antagonistic tones, the crowd was screaming and screaming. When O’Reilly asked about House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, someone in the crowd shouted “skank! And when former President Obama was mentioned, a chorus of disapproval rang out.

Every now and then Trump has offered up an astonishing piece of rational thought, delivered in his signature stream of consciousness style.

“We saved tens of millions of people around the world by creating the vaccine,” Trump said, occasionally sprinkling “no warrant” between the sentences. “It would have been like the Spanish Flu without it… We should take the credit for it and you are playing straight into their hands. [when you doubt the vaccine]. “

For a moment, things looked normal. In touch with reality, even. But when O’Reilly followed Trump’s defense of the vaccine by saying “The president and I are vaxxed. We’ve got the boost,” the crowd booed in disapproval.

And then it got worse.

“We don’t have anyone left in this room, do we?” Trump asked. “Wait, no, don’t say it. We don’t want anything to happen.


Share.

About Author

Comments are closed.