Jacobson knows many people, including some of her relatives, scoff at QAnon.
“You really can’t argue with them,” she said.
Jacobson celebrated with her new friend, Chrisy, when the doors to the downtown arena opened.
“All these people believe me! I’m not crazy here!” Chrisy shouted.
Hours later, during Trump’s speech, Chrisy’s husband, Paul, grinned when the president said “the whole world is watching” what’s happening with protesters in Iran.
“That’s a Q reference,” Paul said, noting the phrase “the world is watching” has appeared several times in Q drops.
The May 30 bulletin sent by the FBI’s Phoenix field office warned of conspiracy theories inspiring violence by groups and “individual extremists,” according to an October court filing for a QAnon-related criminal investigation in Colorado. Police in the Denver suburb of Parker said Cynthia Abcug was accused of conspiring with QAnon supporters to kidnap her son from foster care. Abcug was arrested in Montana on Dec. 30 and awaits extradition to Colorado.
Internet-fueled conspiracies already have been linked to acts of real-world violence. A man charged with killing the reputed boss of the Gambino crime family last March showed off a QAnon symbol scrawled on his left hand during a court appearance. In 2017, a North Carolina man was sentenced to prison for firing a rifle in a Washington, D.C., pizza restaurant at the center of the debunked “Pizzagate” conspiracy theory that high-profile Democrats run a child sex trafficking ring out of the restaurant’s (nonexistent) basement.
Pizzagate and other far-right conspiracy theories have faded, but experts see no end in sight to QAnon’s popularity.
Once upon a time I would refer the 10 percent of them who are violent to law enforcement and give the other 90 percent a new job or rewarding hobby, which is what this is really all about anyway.
Our home became a very hostile environment. I was a robot to him; I was ‘brainwashed.’ There were days that I was going to work and he would call and scream at me to try to make me come home because I was going to go out and get gang-raped or martial law was going to break out. At home, he would follow me around with a phone trying to get me to watch these YouTube videos so I could ‘see.’ I was scared to death because his whole personality changed.
The conspiracy theorists we’ve always had with us, and yes, I know, both sides, the CIA had Kennedy whacked, I get it. But it’s the elevation of it to the podium, the wink-and-nod because Trump’s a salesman, he’s always been a salesman, and this line sells. That’s what’s become dangerous.
I don’t know what we do with these people if he loses. For that matter I don’t know what we do with them if he wins. He’s winning right now, and they are roided up and ready to go, anytime anywhere. I have yet to hear a plan for dealing with the people he’s whipped up into his private militia that doesn’t involve bullshit bravado about I WILL NOT COWER IN THE FACE OF TRUMP SUPPORTERS, which, asshole, ain’t nobody telling you to cower. I’m asking you to THINK.
Think about how you can make your community, your family, your town, this whole fucking country safe for the people most likely to be attacked (hint: that ain’t you, Internet WhiteBoy) in the event he shrugs his shoulders the right way and these people take that as a command to go to war.