Well, this is rough. In a speech on Monday, Donald Trump called himself “your president of law and order and an ally of all peaceful protesters.” He also talked about making an overwhelming show of military force against protesters: “As we speak, I am dispatching thousands and thousands of heavily armed soldiers, military personnel, and law enforcement officers to stop the rioting, looting, vandalism, assaults and the wanton destruction of property.” Shortly afterwards, authorities tear-gassed peaceful protesters and even clergy so that Trump could stage a photo op with a Bible in front of a church. One person who thought Trump did a good job was Nirvana bassist Krist Novoselic.
In a Facebook post, Novoselic wrote that Trump “knocked it out of the park with this speech.” He continued: “I agree, the president should not be sending troops into state — he legally might not be able to anyway — nevertheless, the tone in this speech is strong and direct… The violence, (and not the protests) appear as a leftist insurrection. Imagine if so-called ‘patriot militias’ were raising this kind of hell? If this were the case, left wing people would welcome federal intervention. Most Americans want peace in their communities and President Trump spoke to this desire.”
In response to comments on the post, Novoselic said that his Facebook page is “not a parody account — and certainly not a partisan echo chamber.” Later on, Novoselic set his Facebook account to private and deleted his Twitter account.
In one response, Novoselic says that he voted for the Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson in the 2016 presidential election. (Novoselic made media appearances stumping for Johnson during the election.) Novoselic also once ran for office, trying to become clerk of Wahkaikum County in Washington state. He withdrew his candidacy before the election.
Here’s the full text of what Novoselic wrote:
Wow!!! I know many of you can’t stand him, however, Trump knocked it out of the park with this speech. I drove from Wahkaikum to Seattle and back today and have seen countless fellow Washingtonians on the road. I did not see any violence — but a Tesla supercharging station at an Auburn mall was closed off by police. Driving, I passed by regular folks who are already stressed by the Covid situation. Now, social media and television are looping images of societal breakdown. I agree, the president should not be sending troops into state — he legally might not be able to anyway — nevertheless, the tone in this speech is strong and direct. I have been watching the images in the media and thinking about how polarized our country is. I mean, even wearing medical masks in public can be seen as a political statement! The violence, (and not the protests) appear as a leftist insurrection. Imagine if so-called “patriot militias” were raising this kind of hell? If this were the case, left wing people would welcome federal intervention. Most Americans want peace in their communities and President Trump spoke to this desire. Never mind the legal details that few understand — Trump said he would stop the violence and this speaks to many.
Never have heroes.
UPDATE: Novoselic has deleted his Twitter but made his Facebook public again and clarified his comments in a new post. “To clarify a few things: As an avowed independent, I don’t endorse a major party or candidate,” he wrote. “And it feels insane to have to say this , but I don’t support fascism, and I don’t support an authoritarian state. I believe in a civilized society and that we all have to work toward that. Love and thanks to anyone who cares to read this.”