The United States became an unstable society the minute Donald Trump caught fire among Republican primary voters in the Fall of 2015.
Or was it when Obama was elected in 2008.
The furious right-wing response to Obama’s election as the first black president overshadowed the extent to which an urbanized, multiracial and socially liberal coalition coalesced behind Obama.
By 2015, white conservatives caught on and Trump ran against “Obama’s America” almost as much as he ran against Hillary Clinton. Caught up in long-term Clinton grudges and Bernie v Hillary drama, the Democrats were incapable of mounting a unified defense of their emerging culture and Trump as able to squeak by despite losing the popular vote.
After Trump took office, it was a now unified Democratic coalition that mounted a furious reaction and kept the heat on Trump all four years. But that overshadowed the extent to which the GOP voting base and Trump were shaping each other into a fascist movement that is animated by a cult of personality, longing for political violence, and opposed to American democracy.
The Democratic coalition increased its vote by 16 million in the 2020 presidential election and is unified around Biden. But the Trump cult has solidified in the Republican Party and local Republicans have been inspired to pass legislation seeking to rig future elections and put protesters in jail.
At this point, the quickly evolving dynamic of American instability is the opposition between multicultural democracy and Trump-centered fascism.