A Newsweek headline Monday seemed to compare President Donald Trump’s use of language to galvanize his followers with that of serial killer Charles Mason.
The Newsweek article, headlined “How Murderer Charles Manson And Donald Trump Used Language To Gain Followers,” discussed how Manson used language to garner followers to help him in his gruesome murder schemes by citing a psychoanalyst, while dropping in a paragraph on how Trump used language to garner supporters.
“According to psychoanalyst Mark Smaller, past president of the American Psychoanalytic Association, part of Manson’s power lay in the type of language he used. Notably, Manson was able to speak in a way that engaged those who felt marginalized or alienated,” a Newsweek reporter wrote.
Smaller, the psychoanalyst, emphasized that he didn’t see any similarities between Trump and Mason or Trump supporters and those who followed Mason. But Smaller added that Trump used certain language in an attempt to reach those who feel alienated from the government.
“Smaller is clear that he does not believe President Donald Trump is similar to the convicted killer, or that their followers have any shared beliefs or characteristics, but he did say we can look to the current president to see how language is used to form a bond with followers,” the reporter wrote before quoting Smaller as saying: “Our current president speaks in an emotional or affective way to large numbers of people in our country who feel a kind of alienation or disconnection from the government. They feel very responded to and become his political base.”
Mason, who led a murder cult in the 1960s, died Monday at the age of 83. Leading a group called “the Mason Family,” Mason and his followers started killing in August 1969, starting with pregnant actress Sharon Tate and a few of her friends that were gathered at her home.
Mason would eventually go on to serve nine life terms for the murders he and others committed.
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