March 12, 2016 by David K. Sutton
Donald Trump Supporters: Make America White Again
At a rally today in Ohio, Donald Trump said in response to protesters, “We cannot let our First Amendment rights be taken away from us folks.” This is an appeal to people (yes, white people) who feel persecuted. Of course, they are not being persecuted, but often people believe disagreement, particularly from an out-group, is the same as persecution.
A message to Trump supporters: Your First Amendment rights cannot be taken away from another citizen exercising their First Amendment rights.
I don’t want to call Trump supporters stupid, although I’m sure they are in robust supply, but I do believe Trump supporters are unthinking, especially when it comes time for an intelligent conversation about public policy. I believe Trump supporters feed off action (rhetorical or otherwise), and it doesn’t matter if the action is an appropriate response to a legitimate problem. They respond to rhetoric, often racially charged, that they believe speaks to them, the downtrodden white people.
Yes, there is something to be said for what they are feeling. Most of the wealth this country produces off the labor of millions of people goes to the top one percent. That is indeed a good reason to be angry, and to channel that anger into a useful movement for change. Yes, they are being stepped on economically, but blaming minorities for their problems only feeds hatred. It is not constructive, and it only makes the problem worse, allowing the oligarchy to continue business as usual while people focus on a problem that doesn’t exist.
As for Trump, he is fine with his supporters believing all their problems are created by people who don’t look like them. Donald Trump’s message is finely tuned to speak loudly to a white populace feeling the effects of a rigged economy. They chant “Make America Great Again,” but what they really mean is “Make America White Again.”