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Is Trumpism a cult?

People will sometimes refer to religious denominations they disapprove of as "cults," but the term has a specific meaning. A cult has the following aspects:

1. A powerful, charismatic leader whose word may not be questioned.
2. The requirement of absolute loyalty - no lukewarm cult members, you're either all in or all out.
3. Members turn over their finances to the cult to prove their commitment

The first point definitely applies to Trump. To his base, he's never wrong, in fact, he's incapable of being wrong, because by definition, whatever he does is automatically the right thing, just because he's doing it. The second point also applies. A good example of this is John McCain, who was a staunch conservative for his entire life, but since that one vote to not overturn the Affordable Care Act, he might as well have been Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. Trump followers now hate McCain with a passion, because anything less than absolute loyalty to Trump is unacceptable. Just this past week, conservative radio talk show host Michael Savage, a fanatical Trump supporter, has been subjected to vicious attacks on his Twitter feed after his criticism of Trump's abandonment of the Kurds.

The third point doesn't seem to fit, however, as no one has, to my knowledge, turned over their finances to Trump to go live in a Trump compound somewhere. Although, if you sign up to donate to Trump's campaign, you will find that you're making regular contributions, and the website apparently doesn't have an option to disable this. Also, I'm signed up to receive solicitations from his campaign, and it's a relentless barrage of panicked demands for more money. So some individuals may be susceptible to this.

The demographic of poor, white, rural Trump supporters overlaps significantly with the kind of people who tend to contribute a large portion of their income to televangelists. It would be interesting to conduct a study to determine if contributions to televangelists have decreased during Trump's presidency.
His supporters certainly behave as tho they are in a cult
[@946223,RamessesII] It's definitely cultlike.
MarkPaul · 22-25, M
I think a supplement or alternative to Rule #3 is... [u]would[/u] members turn over their finances to the cult to prove their commitment, [u]if that was an option[/u]. It seems to me the ONLY reason they are not turning over their finances (yet) is because that's [u]not[/u] an option (yet).

As only one example, in the beginning of the "People's Temple," started by Jim Jones, financial servitude was not required. Later communal living transitioned to complete release of individual financial control. Likewise, when you think about those who signed up for [Baby-]trump U and gave massive sums of money for the illusion they were going to be part of Baby-trump's inner circle, even after they suspected they were caught up in a scam (having their picture taken with a life-size cut-out of Baby-trump, instead of the big baby himself, etc.) they continued to turn over their funds.

When Baby-trump no longer has direct access to taxpayer money to pretend as his own, the idea of pooling the money of his breathless followers will be too much for Baby-trump's greed to ignore. Ultimately, like Jim Jones, Baby-trump will be trapped by his own wicked human nature and there will be plenty of Mick Mulvaney's and coat-less Jim Jordan's to corral "the base" into obedient servants of "the movement" designed to strip them of their dignity while convincing them they are indeed special. And, for that, they will be happy and satisfied with their financial and moral decision.
Zonuss · 41-45, M
It can be seen as such. But to understand the ideology of Trump is to understand the mindset of his followers. 🙂
[@970756,MarkS] I didn't say they were extermination camps like Auschwitz, I said they were concentration camps. They meet every definition of the term. Maybe after you've toured a few of them, you can come back with your report.
[@760047,MarmeeMarch] The ones on the southern border. Not that you care, Adolf, since it's only brown people being held in them. It's not like they're human beings or anything to you - many of them don't even speak English.
[@1026,GeorgeWashingtonJr] Sorry there are no concentration camps on the southern border USA side. Go to Mexico one day whitey and see for yourself.
Hmm. Seems like Trumpists have turned the treasury over to him.
The believers always deny that it is a cult and that their leader is the only one who tells the real truth. Some would "take a bullet" for him. "I am the chosen one" and he made sure that he said it in front of the "Fake News", just slipped it in for the entire country to see and hear.
dahumancartoon · 41-45, M
It's very cult like. Most of his hardcore followers are Christian extremists that don't care if he destroys the world because they are waiting on the rapture. Scary stuff.
Zonuss · 41-45, M
[@977868,dahumancartoon] Sounds like misguided people.
Tastyfrzz · 56-60, M
The religious right thinks that his goofy evil character signals the end times and the return of Jesus so the worse he is the happier they are.
whowasthatmaskedman · 61-69, M
Yes. It is. It has all the hallmarks, from the genuinely dispossessed followers with a yearning to gain back "the good old days" to the acolytes around the "Masters" feet lining their own pockets , selling snake oil.
beckyromero · 36-40, F
I don't think so.

I think people, in general, get very defensive when their voting record is attacked. They don't like to admit they made a mistake.
[@31716,beckyromero] It's very hard for cult members to leave a cult, too. They have to admit that they were fooled and that a core part of their identity is based on a lie.
JoeyFoxx · 51-55, M
Here’s what a lot of people miss when they cast aside Trump followers as blind or uninformed.

A large truth is that the status quo politicians may be polite and appropriate (at times), but they are by and large incompetent.

Many of Trump followers are merely protesting.

And that, boys and girls, is a sad state of affairs
[@802348,JoeyFoxx] Also, it’s very hard for a cult member to admit they were fooled.
JoeyFoxx · 51-55, M
I don’t think many people were fooled.

People who believe that Trump won’t get re-elected just don’t understand why he got elected to begin with.

Calling it a cult may make people feel better about it.

But that’s not it.

Zonuss · 41-45, M
[@802348,JoeyFoxx] It's a cult. And that means when you follow someone who appeases his sheep while he abuses others then you are lost. Abuse of power obstruction of Justice. His associates have abandoned him.because they know who he really is. And the people who follow him from a distance have no clue. Including you. 🙂
If you are a Loyal Patriot and serve him well he will allow you to kiss his ring....not the one on his finger.
Harriet03 · 41-45, F
Are you sure you spelled cult right hun?! 🤷‍♀️
swirlie · 31-35, F
No, Trumpism is a 'club' made up of like-minded people whom want to believe in Spiderman, Superman, Ironman and DJ Trump as if they were real life characters and not fictional entities, of whom those same club members see themselves as emulating within their deep-seated alter egos. [/c]

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