Athens State University Professor Sean R. Busick is not sanguine. Here’s a bit from his article (emphasis added):
Too many of our political leaders and pundits sow hatred and division for their own gain without considering the consequences for their country. Spreading lies and calling one’s rivals childish names does nothing to promote the serious sort of dialogue that serious problems deserve.
Like some politicians from the 1850s, their extremism is selfish and short-sighted. Normalizing talk of political violence leads to political violence. Though the extremists who plague us may not be serious people, some of their followers take them seriously.
We too should take them seriously. We should recognize the danger they pose and vote them out.