Hillary Clinton has really stirred up Trump supporters with her comments about being a “basket of deplorables.” After being so used to hiding behind white sheets, being called out for their racism and bigotry is making them feel quite uncomfortable and defensive. So much so they are doing what they know best – continuing to be absolutely deplorable.
Roger Stone is a political consultant and an advisor to the Trump campaign. In response to Clinton’s statement, Stone tweeted an image today of himself depicted as the Nazi mascot/internet meme Pepe the Frog. As a reminder, Stone is the same guy that said last month if Hillary Clinton wins the election (due to voter fraud, of course), it will be a “rhetorical bloodbath” at the inauguration. Lovely.
At first, when I saw the image, I honestly didn’t realize Pepe the Frog was Nazi mascot. However, it didn’t take long to find out that it absolutely is being used in that way.
Earlier this year, a white nationalist who is actively working to keep Pepe the Frog a symbol of their hate told The Daily Beast:
In a sense, we’ve managed to push white nationalism into a very mainstream position. Trump’s online support has been crucial to his [Pepe the Frog’s] success, I believe, and the fact is that his biggest and most devoted online supporters are white nationalists. Now, we’ve pushed the Overton window. People have adopted our rhetoric, sometimes without even realizing it. We’re setting up for a massive cultural shift.”
The alt-right is celebrating the fact that Donald Trump is actually paving the way for their hateful rhetoric, which includes the reclaiming of Pepe the Frog.
Trump is certainly doing his part. Earlier this year he retweeted an image of the internet meme in the likeness of himself.
Hillary Clinton, while she has walked back her statement a bit saying she is sorry she said “half” of Trump supporters belong in the basket of deplorables, was right. Trump has energized the alt-right white supremacists like no other presidential candidate in modern times. He speaks their language. He uses their memes. He retweets their hateful messages.
And, that IS deplorable.
Featured Image via Getty Images/Ben Jackson/Stringer