Letters to the Editor
May 4, 2023

To the Editor:

“Brokeback Republican Politics.” I wish I had created the phrase, but it was coined by writer Tim Miller. After Trump endorsed the Party into a pink stream rather than the expected red wave in 2020, some braver GOP politicians pronounced him a “loser.” But when they tried to stamp out the campfire, they left a few embers burning. All it took was an indictment, then a trial for rape-based defamation, to inflame MAGAs and “dissidents” to flee back to Trump’s “persecuted” but cozy embrace. They just can’t quit him.

The attachment to Trump is not about his dubious policies, certainly not because he did a darn thing for the ordinary American in four years (he did create a tax break for the yacht and private-jet wealthy which was lauded by MAGA, most of whom are not rich), not because of his dedication to the constitution, or because he represents the finest ideals of American politics or manhood.

The MAGA Christian Right often offers images of Trump as Christ, their “savior,” no matter that he consorted serially with women not his wife, is credibly accused of multiple sexual affronts, even rape, and laughs about it. It is unlikely that any despicable treatment of others, refusal to accept responsibility, penchant for falsehoods, alleged criminal conduct, or attempted insurrection will aggrieve his smitten base. How do they overlook his obviously un-Christian defects?
It’s because MAGA is emotionally attached to someone who will say whatever he wants, do anything he wants, flout institutions, courts and values, reject any criticism, has (heretofore) avoided accountability for anything, expressed admiration and appreciation for despots, and encourages emotionally satisfying outrage, resentment, and victimhood.
MAGA is in love and can’t move on even though Trump only pretends to return the devotion. When resisting a strong biological, emotional, or spiritual force, reason is useless. Trump makes MAGA feel good about themselves. From an old Johnny Mathis song:

“When I am with you, I am nothing I was before.
I am everything I ever wished I could be and more.
So, it's not just for what you are yourself that I love you as I do,
But for what I am when I am with you.”

We have to hope that there are more of us who vote and are not emotionally enthralled than there are those who are impassioned by a pseudo-Christian sham-populist demagogue. They can’t help themselves.

Kelly Scoles,
Fillmore, Ca.