Monday, May 9, 2016
Trump Supporters–Not Only Are They Angry But They No Longer Give A F**K
By now everyone knows that Trump supporters are angry, frustrated, and resentful. They feel alienated, marginalized, and put-upon by political correctness. They feel squeezed between the welfare below them and the One Percent above. They have worked hard, never taken a government handout, pursued the American dream, but find themselves middle-aged, lower-middle-class, and stuck in dead-end jobs.
Not only does no one in Washington seem to be paying attention, but are actively dismissive of the way they live. Their religious fundamentalism is ignorant, shopping at Family Dollar and Piggly Wiggly tasteless and unimaginative; bowling, bass fishing, and hunting backward and retrograde; their patriotism, military traditions, and proud support of law enforcement xenophobic, racist, and bullying; and their hours of reality TV, food shows, and daytime television low-brow, and ignorant.
The entire South is vilified by Northern progressives who refuse to set foot below the Mason-Dixon line. To do so would be to give comfort and support to the enemy – an unreconstructed
Confederacy of racists, homophobes, and gun-toting sexists; and the only Southerners worth their attention are the poor blacks who never caught the Illinois Central to Chicago. They are the perpetual victims of white Southern racial hatred.
Poor Southern whites are rednecks, crackers, unreformed, unrepentant, and ignorant racists who deserve nothing except to suffer for their unconscionable sins.
Angry? You bet your life, angry. Who wouldn’t be? Politicians talk a good talk about middle-class values, the plight of the white working poor, and the need to extend them a helping hand, but there are few good jobs to be had. Despite the thousands of dollars paid in taxes for education, public schools continue to decline in performance. Schools in small towns in the South are no better than those in inner-city Washington, Detroit, or Baltimore – holding pens for dysfunctional children. These middle-class whites, considered racist because of their unwillingness to send their children to all-black, failing schools, and who – in the eyes of progressives – compound their racism by scrambling to get their children into private ‘academies’ are caught in a world with few attractive choices.
Family farmers see their land bought up by corporate agro-business interests, low-wage workers in the Southwest see their pay forced even lower by illegal immigrants. At first they champion the calls for a rise in the minimum wage, but then soon find out that small businesses find ways to eliminate entry-level jobs. If they have to pay $15 an hour, then they want workers with proven experience, education, and ability.
Obamacare, touted to help the working poor, has done no such thing. Hopeful employees who have lost their low-paying jobs, find that the new insurance plan is too expensive. The politicos in Washington talked big but never paid attention to the realities of the rural road.
All this is not news. Journalists once dismissive of Donald Trump as a vaudevillian and circus clown, have begun to pay attention to him. How could such a buffoon have captured 20 million primary votes with many big states to come? How could he be running so close to Hillary Clinton in poll projections for November?
‘Anger’, they conclude. Resentment and hostility, they add. Trump and his supporters are both crazed, racist, bigoted, and backward. He is demagogue, right wing zealot, and immoral dictator; and his followers are as ignorant, illogical, and full of rage as he is. Two peas in a pod. Demons feeding off of each other – a dangerously restive and angry populace joining forces with an unprincipled, dangerous politician.
‘Not to worry’, some claim. Even this backward class of retrograde voters will come to their senses once they get into the voting booth, reflect on the awesome responsibilities of the President of the United States, finger on the nuclear trigger, appointer of Supreme Court Justices, first player in financial and economic markets, and vote ‘responsibly’.
Wrong. What pundits and politicians have missed entirely is the depth of Trump supporters’ rage and anger. It is not just bile, spittle, and hatred. It is ‘I don’t give a fuck’.
In other words, many voters in America have simply reached a point of no return. They feel so besieged by LGBT demands, Black Lives Matter, PC cloture of free speech, and the lock-step race-gender-ethnicity march; so unable to make ends meet; so enraged that even the source of their patriotism – a strong, universally-respected, and exceptional America – is being eroded, that they will do anything to dismantle, disrupt, and even destroy a political oligarchy which has caused the civil unrest and social chaos which has led to a desperately disjointed nation.
It no longer matters whether Donald Trump enunciates his positions clearly or at all. He is not judged by the temperate nature of his policies nor any on-the-one-hand-on-the-other judicious consideration of the facts. His supporters have been sold a bill of goods by every President in recent memory and by every politician from Washington to City Hall who says anything to get elected and then forgets all his supporters except those who have contributed to his campaign.
In makes no difference that his calls for radical immigration measures are unlikely to be enacted. Supporters will vote for the principle of tight borders, cultural homogeneity, and law and order. They applaud his position on nuclear weapons (“I’ll use them if I have to”) not for any war-mongering, ‘bomb-‘em-back-to-the-Stone-Age’ ambitions; but because such a stance faces the facts, the obvious, and the incontrovertible. What are all those nukes doing in silos all over the country, they ask, if not to be used?
Parsing nuclear disarmament in a world of Iran, Israel, North Korea, Pakistan, India, and South Africa – all of whom have stockpiles ‘just in case’ makes no sense, is self-serving, and leads only to a continuation of policies of appeasement and idealism.
“F**k it”, is the response of Trump supporters. Things have gotten so bad, gone so wrong, and are almost at the point of no return, anything is better than the way things are.
This is what the political establishment – politicians, pundits, journalists, lobbyists, and activists – simply don’t understand. It isn’t just a matter of anger. It is the depth of that anger and the sense of such futility that taking great risks is not only advisable but necessary that they miss entirely. At their own peril.
Right now liberal Democrats are hysterical about the rabid, demonic Donald Trump, the political anti-Christ whom they knew might come to earth one day but not so soon; and conservative Republicans who are shaking in their boots about the demise of the party of Reagan, William F. Buckley, William Kristol, and George Will.
Both groups refuse to see or admit the radical populism of the Trump campaign. For once the people are speaking in revolutionary terms. Working poor white Americans have finally drawn their line in the sand. No more rolling over with the progressive tide. No more silence and enforced sympathy.
Times have changed, and the sooner both Left and Right realize it, the better.