In Danny Boyle’s 2002 film 28 Days Later, a Cambridge research lab has been conducting experiments on chimpanzees caged in darkness. The only light comes from 360 degrees of screens showing nothing but beatings, riots, fires, torture – a round-the-clock barrage of the most violent videos imaginable.
Enter an animal liberation group. A panicked scientist comes in and warns them not to release the chimps, who are infected with a highly contagious virus. This warning is, of course, ignored, and the first ape freed bites the activist, and let’s just say carnage ensues. Cut to four weeks later, and London is populated by zombie-like creatures infected with the “rage virus,” intent on infecting everyone else.
We are currently living through a version of 28 Days Later. In this analogy, Newt Gingrich, Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and the rest of their depraved ilk comprise the group that’s spent two decades exalting ignorance, demeaning truth and preaching bigotry, seeding and feeding the rage virus. Donald Trump is the ape that sunk its teeth into America, infecting its population with the filth that spews from his appropriately sphincter-shaped mouth, liberating the haters to let it fly and connecting the rest of us with feelings we ne
ver thought ourselves capable of, all the while making the public discourse safe for incivility, indecency, and insanity. Safe for inhumanity.