Monday, November 21, 2016

Trump's Agenda of Making America "White" Again

White nationalist Trump supporters

Like many in the wake of the results of the 2016 presidential election and the disaster that the Electoral College has foisted on America, I cannot get over feelings of depression and dread.  Suddenly, views and behavior that were once deemed offensive and to avoided by decent, moral people are in ascendant and some Trump supporters have even yelled out "Heil Victory" and at an alt-right gathering of white nationalists a speaker "railed against Jews and, with a smile, quoted Nazi propaganda in the original German. America, he said, belonged to white people, whom he called the “children of the sun,” a race of conquerors and creators who had been marginalized . . . "  This is Donald Trump's America and his cabinet appointments confirm that he is not disavowing this extremism.  One almost wonders when he will give a nod to forming his own version of Hitler's brown shirts.  A column in the New York Times looks at the frightening administrations in the process of formation.  I fear that the nightmare will only worsen with time.  Here are column highlights:
This may well be the beginning of the end: the early moments of a historical pivot point, when the slide of the republic into something untoward and unrecognizable still feels like a small collection of poor judgments and reversible decisions, rather than the forward edge of an enormous menace inching its way forward and grinding up that which we held dear and foolishly thought, as lovers do, would ever endure.
So many of President-elect Donald Trump’s decisions herald a tomorrow that is bleak for anyone who held hope that he could be a different, better man than the one who campaigned (I was not among that cohort), or those who simply assumed that the gravity of the office he is to assume would ground him.
Hard-line Trumpism isn’t softening; it’s being cemented.
Increasingly, as he picks his cabinet from among his fawning loyalists, it is becoming clear that by “Make America Great Again,” he actually meant some version of “Make America a White, Racist, Misogynistic Patriarchy Again.” It would be hard to send a clearer message to women and minorities that this administration will be hostile to their interests than the cabinet he is assembling.
He has promoted Stephen Bannon, an alt-right, white nationalist cheerleader and sympathizer, to chief White House strategist.
He has chosen the extreme anti-Islam hyperbolist Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn — who also happens to be a stop-and-frisk apologist and has tweeted that “fear of Muslims is RATIONAL” — as his national security adviser.
Then there was the choice of Senator Jeff Sessions for attorney general. In 1986 Sessions famously became only the second nominee in 48 years to be rejected by the Senate Judiciary Committee, due to racist comments and behavior.
When confronted by the committee about remarks he was accused of making about the N.A.A.C.P. and the A.C.L.U., Sessions responded: “I’m often loose with my tongue. I may have said something about the N.A.A.C.P. being un-American or Communist, but I meant no harm by it.”
But not all of Sessions’s issues regarding minorities have a 30-year vintage. . . . he has associated with anti-immigrant groups we consider to be deeply racist, including the Federation for American Immigration Reform and the Center for Security Policy.” . . . “FAIR leaders have ties to white supremacist groups and eugenicists and have made many racist statements. Its advertisements have been rejected because of racist content. FAIR’s founder, John Tanton, has expressed his wish that America remain a majority-white population . . . .
Trump is making a statement that it would behoove America to heed: The America he envisions, and is now actively constructing from his perch of power, is not an inclusive America. It is a society driven by a racial Owellianism that seeks to defend, elevate and enshrine the primacy of white men and is hostile to all “others.”
That orange glow emanating from the man is the sun setting on America’s progress, however slow and halting, on race and gender inclusion and equity.
 Only a little more than 25% of registered voters voted for Trump.  I keep wondering when the majority will wake the Hell up and realize that this move to fascism and authoritarianism and Russian oligarch style corruption must be stopped. 

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