To my friends, especially non-white, who are concerned about a Trump presidency:
I didn’t vote for Trump. I don’t think he’s a good man. And while there are many criticisms one could credibly level, I do not believe that racism is one of them.
I know a lot of Trump supporters. And not one of them that I know of supported him because they want to get rid of black or Mexican people. I know there’s an element out there, but I don’t know any of them personally. On the left there are also radicals, communists, people who hate me because I’m white, people who want to take away my children because I teach them Christianity.
But the election of Trump had nothing to do with hating blacks or foreigners or gay people or women. The media has been lying to you. And they’ve been lying to you about my community, my people. The years and years of lies that we have endured, that we are all racist, sexist bigots is a big part of why Trump is now the president. For all his faults, we finally had a candidate that didn’t believe those lies, that at least pretended to like white middle-class Americans, as opposed to most of our political and entertainment industries.
If you are not part of white working class or middle class western and mid-western America, you just have no idea how hard the last eight years have been. I know. I see it all the time. I see young people grow up in schools that teach them nothing, utterly unprepared for life. It used to be that those young people would at least have lots of jobs waiting for them where they would learn the real score. But those jobs are drying up. The industries that used to employ them are hogtied in a hundred different ways. So incomes are declining, opportunities are scarce, and at the same time we have to hear about “white privilege” and all the other nonsense. I see men who have worked in industries their whole lives watch those industries die, not because of normal market forces but because of government regulations. We’re told we’re racist because we’re worried about the wisdom of moving in thousands of people from cultures that hate us, that do not value human rights or the equality of women, and dumping them right next to the poorest and most vulnerable in our own societies, and paying for their upkeep out of a treasury that’s already 20 trillion in the hole. Families are falling apart. A thousand other ills assail us, many of which have nothing to do with who’s president, and some of which do. It’s all been said many times in this election, if you will just take the time to listen.
Freedom of religion is another big issue. Christianity is increasingly not only being marginalized, but actually illegalized. Gay wedding cakes, people being fired and hounded and harrassed because of their views on transgenderism or homosexuality. These are the things that make middle class white America feel like the national elites not only don’t care about them, but actively dislike them.
Trump actually appeared to care about these things. Trump actually communicated to middle America that he respects and likes us, and wants to do good things for us. I have profound doubts about whether he actually will. As I said, I wasn’t a supporter. But good people came to different conclusions, and I don’t blame them.
Please stop believing the lies. Please stop believing that people supported Trump because we hate blacks and Mexicans and gay people. We don’t. And as long as you believe that lie, you will only widen the gap that exists in America. You will only aid and abet the vicious toxic stew that our national politics have become. You only exacerbate the sense of most working-class and middle-class white Americans that the rest of the country hates them and is uninterested in actually listening to them. Keep at it, and this election will seem like a time of peace and tranquility compared to what’s coming.
The people who supported Donald Trump want a prosperous, secure America for all of us. They really do. They want a president who believes his job is to care about and address the problems of Americans, not everyone else around the world. They want a president who thinks that America is actually a good thing, something that should be preserved. Donald Trump, for whatever else he is, is a brilliant salesman and understood the demand that the political market wasn’t meeting, and he met it. Not because most of middle class white America hates blacks and Mexicans. I want to make clear- I’m not interested in defending Trump. I’m interested in defending the people who supported him.
So please, my friends who fear the election of Donald Trump and what it means for your place in America- don’t believe the lies of those trying to spin you up, to create boogeymen and scapegoats for you, to keep you afraid so you keep on depending on the scaremongers and race-baiters- Donald Trump supporters do not hate you and do not want you out of the country. What is in his heart is his business. But I know the people who supported him. They are my people, my communities, and they are not what the people on TV tell you they are. Kristallnacht is not around the corner. Pogroms are not about to begin. Lynchings are not on the menu. I don’t know if any of the country’s problems will really get solved or not. I’m skeptical, though time will tell. In particular I’ve heard no credible proposals to deal with our disastrous national debt. But if you just want to work at your jobs and raise your families and abide by the law and let people live their lives, then Trump people will be all for you, whatever the color of your skin.