Thursday, August 04, 2016

Trump, White Male Fragility, and Unfiltered Hate

The New York Times has put together of video clips from Donald Trump rallies over the last few months The video can be found here).  The picture it paints of the supporters of Trump is nothing less than ugly.  Hatred of others and misogyny in general is a constant underlying theme.  And who is embracing this message the most? White males without degrees, white evangelical Christians for whom racism goes hand in hand with their toxic religious beliefs, and white supremacists.  Even among friends who much to my dismay are supporting Trump, latent racism seems to be a driving forces despite the fact that a majority of these individuals would deny it.  I suspect anti-gay animus also motivates many of the "godly folk" who are rallying to Trump's world view which is the antithesis of the true Gospel message.  The New Civil Rights Movement looks at the Times compilation.  Here are highlights:
"Sieg heil!"
"Fuck you, Hillary!"
"Hang the bitch!"
"Kill her!"
"Trump the bitch!"
"Get out of here, you fag!"
"Fuck that nigger!"

"Hillary Clinton needs to get her ass spanked!"
"Ignorance and immigrants. They mix together!"
"Fuck those dirty beaners!"
"Hillary is a whore!"
Those are some of the comments made by Trump supporters at rallies the Republican nominee for president has made over the past few months, as the New York Times shows in a compilation of various clips they've put together and published today.
The video, clearly, is disturbing, but what's more disturbing is the culture Trump has created, fostered, nurtured, and allowed at his rallies. 
Perhaps even more revealing are the comments of one Trump supporter included in the video, an older man who says he feels Trump is his last chance to "preserve the culture I grew up in."
Its ugly to say the least.  But sadly, what the video clips disclose are the true face of today's Republican Party regardless of whatever smoke screen the party elite may try to utilize.  A column in the New York Times makes the case that the time has come to cease giving Trump and his most foul supporters a pass.  Their racism and wide ranging hatred must be confronted and called out.  Here are column excerpts:
Donald Trump . . . . appeals to something deeper, something baser: Fear. His whole campaign slogan, “Make America Great Again,” is in fact an inverted admission of loss — lost primacy, lost privilege, lost prestige.
And who feels that they have lost the most? White men.
As the New York Times’ Upshot pointed out in July, “According to our estimates, Mrs. Clinton is doing better among basically every group of voters except for white men without a degree.” Put another way: “Hillary Clinton is largely performing as well or better than Barack Obama did in 2012, except among white men without a degree.”
Indeed, a Monday report in The Times put it this way: “A New York Times/CBS News poll two weeks ago found that white men preferred her Republican opponent, Donald J. Trump, to Mrs. Clinton almost two to one, 55 percent to 29 percent.”
He appeals to a regressive, patriarchal American whiteness in which white men prospered, in part because racial and ethnic minorities, to say nothing of women as a whole, were undervalued and underpaid, if not excluded altogether.
White men reigned supreme in the idealized history, and all was good with the world. (It is curious that Trump never specifies a period when America was great in his view. Did it overlap with the women’s rights, civil rights or gay rights movements? For whom was it great?)
Trump’s wall is not practical, but it is metaphor. Trump’s Muslim ban is not feasible, but it is metaphor. Trump’s huge deportation plan isn’t workable, but it is metaphor.
There is a portion of the population that feels threatened by unrelenting change — immigration, globalization, terrorism, multiculturalism — and those people want someone to, metaphorically at least, build a wall around their cultural heritage, which they conflate in equal measure with American heritage.
In their minds, whether explicitly or implicitly, America is white, Christian, straight and male-dominated. If you support Trump, you are on some level supporting his bigotry and racism. You don’t get to have a puppy and not pick up the poop.
And acceptance of racism is an act of racism. You are convicted by your complicity. . . . Supporting Trump is indefensible and it makes you as much of a pariah as he is.
For as long as racism and tribalism and xenophobia exist in this country, Trump’s foibles will not signal his ultimate failure. But let’s not let off the people who prop him up, claiming that they’re simply being party loyalists, or Hillary haters or having Supreme Court concerns.
Trump is a mirror. He is a reflection of — indeed a revealing of — the ugliness that you harbor, only it is possible that you may have gone your life expressing it in ways that were more coded and politic. Trump is an unfiltered primal scream of the fragility and fear consuming white male America.

Like I have long argued about with conservative Christians, it is time that the larger public recognizes that these people are not nice, decent or deserving of deference.  They need to be exiled to the cultural and political wilderness and shunned by truly decent people. 

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