"Just remember, what you are seeing and what you are reading is not what's happening" Trump says at the Veterans of Foreign Wars convention. pic.twitter.com/NWFsB8QV2g— Vera Bergengruen (@VeraMBergen) July 24, 2018
In a chilling reminder that the reality depicted in George Orwell’s dystopian novel “1984” isn’t that far-fetched, President Donald Trump just told his supporters not to believe what they see on TV and read in newspapers and instead just put their trust in him and his equally incompetent administration.
For those who might not remember this detail or haven’t had the chance to read the book, rejecting “the evidence of your eyes and ears” was the “final, most essential command” of the authoritarian regime in a world filled with war, surveillance and oppression.
The commander-in-chief made the troubling remarks while speaking to a Veterans of Foreign Wars gathering in Kansas City, Missouri.
“This country is doing better than it’s ever done before, economically. But it’s all working out,” Trump said while talking about the country’s economy. “Just remember: What you’re seeing and what you’re reading is not what's happening.”
As if that wasn’t alarming enough, he then told the voters to “just stick with us.”
“Don’t believe the crap you see from these people — the fake news,” the president continued.
Now, Trump’s attacks on media aren’t new by any means. In fact, he once branded the so-called “fake news” as the country's “greatest enemy,” mocked a journalist with a physical disability and has repeatedly attacked reporters and news outlets for calling him out on his disastrous policies.
However, that doesn’t mean his latest remarks aren’t particularly worrisome.
Social media users were quick to draw the comparison between Trump’s comment and Orwell’s work.
"Just remember what you’re seeing and what you're reading is not what’s happening," --President Donald J. Trump— Noah Antwiler (@TheSpoonyOne) July 24, 2018
"The party told you to reject the evidence of your eyes and ears. It was their final, most essential command." --George Orwell, "1984"
“The party told you to reject the evidence of your eyes and ears. It was their final, most essential command.”— David Priess (@DavidPriess) July 24, 2018
—George Orwell https://t.co/OhqKrU0PBE
“What you are seeing and what you are reading, is not happening.”— Christopher Titus (@TitusNation) July 24, 2018
George Orwell is laughing.
Donald Trump: “Just remember that what you’re seeing & what you’re reading is not what’s happening."— Ryan Knight ?? (@ProudResister) July 24, 2018
Trump is creating a dark, fictional world for his supporters to live in where up is down, where 1 + 2 = 4, where racism is patriotism and where conspiring w/ Russia is patriotic.
Not the Onion and not Orwell's missing line from "1984". https://t.co/VphrWSg1EX— Jeff Greenfield (@greenfield64) July 24, 2018
Orwell wrote about this. Also, this is the tactic used by dictators. But carry on. https://t.co/Dl3v6dxvZm— Wajahat Ali (@WajahatAli) July 24, 2018
One of the ways dictators rule their regimes is by manipulating the masses and discrediting the media –and what the president appears to be doing doesn’t seem too far off, unfortunately.
Someone needs to tell Trump this is not how democracies are supposed to work.
Thumbnail/Banner Credits: Reuters/Carlos Barria