It was obvious that this was going to be an ugly year in U.S. politics, but it looks like the ugliness isn’t going to be confined to rhetorical flourishes in campaign speeches and media ads. The Republican Party has fostered and benefitted from the anger and resentment of people who feel that the country and its promise have been stolen from them, and Donald Trump has now arrived to further fan their sense of outrage and claim the dual roles of savior and avenger.
On the other hand, the targets of this anger and resentment now have an explicit figure to personalize the forces that have kept them down and seek to reverse any progress they might have made toward realizing that same American promise, and so they feel the need and obligation to oppose Trump’s crusade with as much force and vehemence as possible.
Trump has already indicated his support and encouragement for whatever measures his supporters find necessary to fight what they see as attempts by the people who have ruined America to keep real Americans like themselves from taking it back. It almost seems inevitable that anger will strike against anger and set off a miserable calamity.