'Heil Trump' Trends After Clip Of Rallygoers Raising Their Hands To Trump As Creepy Song Played Goes Viral
The fervor and rhetoric surrounding former Republican President Donald Trump have been building for a while now, but his latest rally hit a new and disturbing level of zeal.
At the "Save America" MAGA rally in Youngstown, Ohio, Trump was campaigning for himself—as always—and for Ohio Republican Senate candidate J.D. Vance.
Near the end of his speech, a song began to play in the background as Trump monologued a list of ways the country is supposedly going down the drain now he isn't President.
The song was identified by the New York Times as a near identical match for a song called "Wwg1wga"—an abbreviation for the QAnon slogan "Where we go one, we go all".
Trump's vaguely rhythmic monotone during this part of the speech, combined with the background music and the fact many people stood and raised an arm with one finger up while he spoke, led many to draw comparisons to cult leaders' speeches.
There is some disagreement online as to the origin of the gesture, which is new for these rallies, but many seem to agree it is also linked to either the QAnon conspiracy or the White nationalist and White supremacist slogan "America First."
Though many people also noted it's resemblance to a certain salute from 1940s Germany.
\u201cAfter reposting a photo of himself wearing a \u2018Q\u2019 symbol this week, Donald Trump is now all-in on QAnon at his rallies.\n\nTonight, as he played the QAnon WWG1WGA theme song, his followers raised their arms and held up their pointer fingers towards him in a QAnon salute.\u201d— MeidasTouch (@MeidasTouch) 1663466785
You can see footage of the moment below:
\u201cthis is one of the most bizarre things I've seen at a Trump rally. All it is missing is passing around Kool-Aid right after.\u201d— Aaron Rupar (@Aaron Rupar) 1663461149
\u201cTrump's rally in Youngstown, Ohio, ends with the dramatic music playing. Strange vibes.\u201d— Aaron Rupar (@Aaron Rupar) 1663461219
For anyone who isn't able to watch the videos, here's a still image to give you a bit of an idea of what the moment was like.
Many Twitter users commented on the very strong cult vibe from this latest rally.
\u201c@sobusyme @atrupar Yes, the calm, rhythmic intonation with the meditation-like, pass the offering plate music and bowed heads. Cult is going to next level, to religion. Prayer hand, singular, out like a sig heil salute. Index finger: is that for \u201c1\u201d? This new tactic is to put followers into trance.\u201d— Aaron Rupar (@Aaron Rupar) 1663461726
\u201c@atrupar Trump doesn\u2019t give speeches. He tells long fake stories that provide an alternate reality in which he\u2019s the hero and allow his audience to conflate themselves with him as he pretends to vanquish imaginary enemies like \u201cCrazy Nancy\u201d \u201cCrooked Hillary\u201d \u201cthe Deep State\u201d & \u201cFake News\u201d\u201d— Aaron Rupar (@Aaron Rupar) 1663461149
\u201c@ZaleskiLuke @atrupar How did they stay awake for this long winded weird bedtime story.\nThey forgot to show the other side of the stadium\u2026 \ud83d\ude02\u201d— Aaron Rupar (@Aaron Rupar) 1663461219
\u201c@atrupar The good news is that I\u2019ve been told this isn\u2019t a cult. That\u2019s a relief!\u201d— Aaron Rupar (@Aaron Rupar) 1663461149
\u201c@atrupar the prayer music, and people swaying their bodies with their right arms up just like in church. MAGA is a religious cult. Cult members follow their dear leader regardless of facts and reason.\u201d— Aaron Rupar (@Aaron Rupar) 1663461149
\u201cI have never seen this finger pointing gesture at a Trump rally. It has nothing to do with Q as far as I know. But with the organ music and the swaying, I'm getting a very Jim Bakker/Benny Hinn vibe.\u201d— Mike Rothschild (@Mike Rothschild) 1663470070
\u201c@atrupar Such an inspirational and dynamic public speaker \ud83d\ude2c\n\n/s\u201d— Aaron Rupar (@Aaron Rupar) 1663461219
\u201c@atrupar Jesus christ that's about as close to a crowd of people doing a nazi salute as you'll probably get outside of an actual nazi meeting where they openly admit they're nazis.\u201d— Aaron Rupar (@Aaron Rupar) 1663461219
\u201c@atrupar Note to suckers,\n\nConman always tells you what you want to hear. Always. \n\nConman always tells you to \u2018donate.\u2019 Always\n\nConman always tells you he\u2019s fighting for you. Always.\n\nConman always tells you it\u2019s now or never. Always. \n\nConman always tells you only he can fix it. Always.\u201d— Aaron Rupar (@Aaron Rupar) 1663461219
While this is a new level of cult-like behavior at a Trump MAGA rally, it's also on brand.
It remains to be seen whether these more overt and seemingly intentional callouts to the QAnon conspiracy and White nationalism continue to be a theme.