QAnon Filled the Void Left by Trump’s Nihilism
Without the right words, there can be no true reality — QAnon exploited Trump’s lies to create an alternate universe.
We all know the story by now. According to the mysterious Q, Donald Trump was waging a secret war against a global cult of Satanic Democratic paedophiles. One day, the Storm would happen, the day of reckoning. Trump would reveal the truth to the world, perpetrators would be arrested and executed, and he would rule America forever as a benevolent dictator.
“How could anyone believe this nonsense,” you’re asking yourself the question right now, aren’t you? I know I do. Whenever I read anything about the QAnon conspiracy theory, I roll my eyes in disbelief. Yet, millions of people adhere to this deranged narrative. Five per cent of registered voters are Q-believers. Marjorie Taylor-Greene and Lauren Boebert, two GOP freshwomen representatives, are openly supporting the conspiracy.
In the face of such widespread acceptance, we cannot be satisfied with the explanation that all these people are stupid or uneducated. A glance at the r/qanoncasualties subreddit tells us many of the cult’s victims are well-read and respectable people. They come from all walks of life and backgrounds.
There is something more profound and fundamental going on; something that talks to people the world over, whatever their life experiences and creeds. It has to do with language and rhetoric; it has to do with our deep-rooted need for meaning and purpose.
More specifically, the success and rise of QAnon are inextricably linked to the emptiness of Donald Trump’s political discourse, his constant spewing of lies, and his depraved nihilism and narcissism. Trump didn’t create QAnon, but his behaviour and words as president turned it into the mass-phenomenon it is today.
When people look up to their political leaders, it is to find sense and guidance in their discourse and actions. Leaders lead from the top-down, they lead by example, and the one Donald Trump has set is deceitful, selfish, and perverted.
It is no wonder that faced with an empty lying amoral suit, people turned to something else to make sense of the world. They turned to…