Former President Donald Trump is deliberately fomenting violence and courting believers of QAnon, a far-right conspiracy theory, University of Chicago professor Robert Pape said Sunday.
Trump delivered a speech Saturday night at a rally in Youngstown, Ohio. Observers noted that background music during the speech sounded similar to a 2020 song, “WWG1WGA,” a reference to the QAnon slogan “where we go, we all go.” Some QAnon influencers took the music as a signal in support of their theory, as Trump has posted a flurry of messages in recent weeks that seem to evoke his believers.
QAnon supporters believe Trump will eventually seize power in the country and arrest — and possibly execute — Democrats, celebrities and other influential figures for being part of a “clique” of satanic cannibalistic pedophiles. The far-fetched theory has been widely debunked and is not supported by any credible evidence.
Pape warned that Trump is deliberately contacting QAnon supporters, describing the situation as “threatening” and “extremely disturbing” during an appearance on UKTN News’ Face the nation.
“The former president is ready to go to court not just supporters of his, but also those who support violence for his goals — number one being returned to the White House,” said Pape, a political science professor who is a senior citizen. specializes in international security matters. .
Pape added that it is “clear” that Trump, one of the leading conservative figures in the United States, is aware of what QAnon entails and that his signals to his supporters could have violent consequences in future elections.
“The problem we face is that in tweets from the former president, he is deliberately fueling not only the fires of anger that give him political support, but also the fires that lead to that violence,” he said. “That’s really the crux of our problem that we face as a threat to democracy. Because if it’s just a political threat, then we can hold elections. But once it’s not just denying an election, it’s use of force in response to election denial, then we’re in a new game.”
Trump’s Truth Social Posts Call For QAnon
The ex-president has made several Truth Social posts referencing the conspiracy theory. Last Tuesday, he reposted a photo of himself next to the words “The Storm is Coming” and a QAnon pin. QAnon supporters refer to this by saying that Trump will reportedly retake power and try his opponents as the “storm.” The post was one of the most direct references the former president has made to the conspiracy theory.
An image Trump shared in August read: “The deep state whispered to President Trump ‘You can’t withstand the storm.’ The president whispered back, ‘I am the storm.'” Another post, which has since been deleted, shared a link to a QAnon website.
News week contacted Trump’s office for comment.