Trump’s DC Speech Rhetoric is a Fascist’s Clarion Call

Ted Millar
5 min readAug 8, 2022
Photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash

Donald Trump’s return to the Washington, DC on July 26 got a lot of press.

The twice-impeached, twice-popular-vote-losing former president had not set foot in the nation’s capitol since he nearly pulled off a coup to overthrow the government on January 6, 2021.

Maybe it’s because we’ve become somewhat inured to Trump’s extreme rhetoric, or for that matter the rhetoric dominating the current republican party since Trump’s ascendancy, but “the former guy” proposed some very chilling — and familiar — autocratic ideas in his speech at the “America First Policy Institute” summit on July 26.

First, he called for concentration camps.

Yes, concentration camps, this time for the homeless, in addition to the ones he established for migrants at the Southern border with Mexico.

Combining the human rights violations we committed against Native Americans in the 18th and 19th centuries and Japanese Americans during World War Two, Trump asserted the government should “remove” thousands of homeless Americans and relocate them to tents on “large parcels of inexpensive land in the outer reaches of the cities” with “permanent bathrooms” and “medical professionals.”

Then, channeling his inner former Phillipine president Roderigo Duterte, Trump suggested executing drug dealers.

He praised China’s undemocratic policies toward suspected criminals.

In addition to favoring a return to the racist “stop-and-frisk policies in cities,” Trump insisted that if he were still in office, he would override governors and mayors, and deploy the national guard to high-crime neighborhoods.

Echoing shades of his 2017 inaugural speech in which he intoned about a dystopic nation ravaged by “American carnage,” Trump claimed:

“The dangerously deranged roam our streets with impunity. We are living in such a different country for one primary reason: There is no longer respect for the law and there certainly is no order. Our country is now a cesspool of crime.”

We might be inclined to laugh and dismiss this as mere bluster, the tormented rantings of a delusional, ill-qualified, washed-up old wanna-be despot.

Ted Millar

Ted Millar is a teacher, poet, and political writer for The Left Place blog on Substack: Twitter: @tedmillar