Last week, after reports that Trump had committed obstruction of justice by firing FBI Director James Comey (at the totally normal hour of 4:52 a.m.), our cheeto-in-chief took a break from all his important work to tweet this:
Like most of his early-morning, ill-considered tweets, this spawned a dozen think pieces and comparisons trying to identify the actual greatest witch hunt in American history (just going out on a wild limb, but maybe it was the actual Puritan witch hunts?). Here are five reasons why Donald is totally wrong:
1. Donald’s level of ignorance about his own behavior and his ability to maintain an attention span of a goldfish outdoes itself every damn day.
Saying that you’re the subject of a witch hunt implies that you’ve done nothing wrong, and that’s just not true. Donald, you’ve done lots of things that are very wrong. During the campaign, Donald himself joked that being a great president is the only way he’d get into heaven, so I think that clears up his plans for the afterlife.
2. If by “the single greatest witch hunt of a politician in American history” Trump means that a large coven of witches is hunting and hexing him and will not rest until he’s removed from office, then yes, that would be correct.
Witches have been casting binding spells on Trump and all those who abet him on the night of every waning crescent moon (the latest one was last night), offshoots of the 1960s feminist activist group W.I.T.C.H. have been out in full witch-garb protesting and hexing 45 since the inauguration, and Trump voodoo dolls for the amateur hexer have hit the market. Earlier this week, a hellish sinkhole opened up outside of tacky palace Mar-a-Lago, so that seems like a pretty clear sign that the witches are not here to play.
Good one, Seth.
4. From the 14th to 17th century, witch hunts swept Europe.
Thousands of women were executed for witchcraft, which could vary from charges of sexual deviancy to healing the sick. These women accused of witchcraft were often known as healers or “wise women,” and served as the only medical practitioners in areas afflicted by poverty, disease, and a lack of general understanding about health and childbirth. Witch hunts were well-organized campaigns that sought to diminish the power of these community healers in order to shift power to the Church; if people were told not to trust the women they’d traditionally sought out for medical help, they’d be forced to turn to the Church. For more on this fascinating history, I highly recommend Witches, Midwives & Nurses by Barbara Ehrenreich and Deirdre English, but my main point is this: You’re not the subject of a witch hunt, Donnie. We all know that you don’t care about the poor and the sick.
5. Fundamentally, Donald misunderstands the term “witch hunt.”
Witch hunts are the scapegoating and persecution of those who are different by those who are in power during times of fear and panic. It’s especially associated with political scapegoating because of Arthur Miller’s 1953 play The Crucible, which used the Salem witch trials as a metaphor to critique McCarthyism and the Red Scare. Donnie: You’re the one causing the fear and panic, not the one being scapegoated for it.
And that’s just another testament to the limited amount of information Donnie can keep in his head at one time, because Donnie’s best friend Roy Cohn was one of the main architects of the Red Scare and served as Senator Joseph McCarthy’s right-hand man. Really, Donald, Roy and Joe would be disappointed in you.
And another tip, Donald: Do your research. Maybe next time you’re trying to make yourself seem totally innocent, don’t use a term that Nixon used at the height of Watergate? It’s not the look you’re going for. It’s actually the exact opposite of what you’re going for.