I thought, when the largely middle and upper-middle-class, white insurrectionists terrorized the Capitol, we in the media had collectively agreed we were going to stop pretending it was for any reasons other than racism and possibly amusement. But I thought wrong. Not even a month later and the Washington Post is sniffing around diners in Cheyenne, Wyoming, looking for people with children named Bubba who want to talk about how “disenfranchised” they feel when the government suggests they can’t do treason.
As a Cheney (Liz this time) somehow becomes a lesser evil in the narrative around impeaching one-term President Donald Trump by being one of only a handful within the party who agrees that inciting a riot outside the U.S. Capitol Building is perhaps grounds for impeachment, the Washington Post was quick to get a man on the ground back in Wyoming. The locals, unhappy with Cheney’s unhappiness with insurrections, invited Florida fascist Matt Gaetz to potentially stoke some white supremacist violence by calling Donald Trump Jr. on speakerphone in an anti-Cheney stump speech:
“In the back of the crowd was Brooke Dugan, 32, a stay-at-home mom, who knew Gaetz from his frequent appearances on Tucker Carlson’s television show. She put her two boys, Liam and Bubba, in masks with American flags and the words ‘God, Guns and Trump” on them to “teach them about patriotism...We came because we Republicans need to stick together,’ Dugan said. ‘They’re coming after our guns. They’re trying to tell us what to do, so we can’t have people who are not with us.’”
And to this recitation that could have come verbatim from the Neo-Nazi Grievances Handbook plainly stating that conspiracy theory-obsessed extremists are angry at the (completely manufactured) prospect of being without deadly firearms, the narrative did due diligence to the concerns of an alarming, demonstrably violent segment of the population by asking yet again if this wasn’t really just about coal:
“It had been decades since residents here said they saw a president who was so aligned with preserving their way of life,” the report insisted despite literally no one mentioning that and the fact that Teton County, Wyoming, is the richest county in the entire United States. “In an economy so tied to coal, oil, and gas — and to a lesser extent agriculture — residents were relieved when the Trump administration eased Obama-era regulations that complicated their lives, limiting everything from excavating on federal lands to the type of grass used on their farms.”
The Post did find time to catch up with one of Liz Cheney’s friends who says people are being really mean to her for only tacitly supporting a political party still overtly implying that insurrections are legal when white people do them. The paper also offered some helpful career advice for Cheney from a former state representative named Matt Teeters who thinks there still may be time for Cheney to prove to constituents that she’s not not a fascist:
“But Teeters noted that there are ways that Cheney could help the process. She could explain more frequently that she stood often with Trump. She could also meet voters face-to-face and explain her position. And she could continue to forcefully oppose Biden’s attempts to limit fracking.”
Truly, this angle never gets old. Can’t wait for some truck stop man-on-the-street commentary around how the Proud Boys are actually just standing in solidarity with cattle ranchers angry about the mislabeling of plant products as “burgers.”