THE BAHAMAS — When Sam McWilliams woke up in a hospital in the Bahamas, he was convinced that he had awoken to find a nightmare. A hellish, apocalyptic scene greeted him as he got his discharge papers from the nurse and left the hospital. He had been in a coma, the doctors all told him, and he’d come to just in time to find the world falling apart all around him.
“I was just certain I had come out of a coma in Trump’s America,” Sam told reporters once he’d gotten back home, “because I’d forgotten that I was given a ticket to this festival thing out here, and when I got off the plane, I tripped, fell, landed on the hard concrete, and fell into a coma.”
Sam said that the scene he saw at the Fyre Festival could have been mistaken by anyone as a scene from somewhere in America during the reign of President Donald Trump.
“There were a lot of people who were sold on something,” Sam said, “that just did not turn out to be true. So they were all angry about being duped. I felt like I was in Pennsylvania, around six to twelve months from now, know what I mean?”
Mr. McWilliams said that the overall mood at the Fyre Festival was one of “shock, disappointment, and frankly abandonment.” He said that many people were screaming about feeling “duped” and they were victims of fraud.
“Some people had no food, some people had no water,” Sam said, “and others had nowhere to go. People were clearly told one thing was going to happen, and they got something completely different.”
The anger and outrage that grew among those at the festival also made Sam feel like he was just somewhere in the United States. He said seeing the tents setup on the beach just made him think he’d been in his coma for years and that climate change had washed away so much of the coastline that people were forced to sleep and live in tents. Sam thought that seeing people kept in airport waiting rooms with no food, water, or outside light were just Muslim immigrants from “some country that Trump isn’t doing business in” and they were being held for national security reasons.
“It wasn’t until someone wearing a Fyre Festival t-shirt walked by me that I realized what was happening,” Sam said, “because honestly, the kinds of disappointment and despair I was seeing on that island felt a lot like the disappointment and despair I’ve seen from people who are realizing what life in Trump’s America will be like.”
Follow James on Twitter @JamesSchlarmann.