Walt Whitman wouldn’t have forgotten them …
He knew that the fate of each one of us is inextricably linked to the fate of all.
The notion that the fate of each one of is tied to the fate of all is the essence of democracy.
“Dignity is as essential to human life as water, food, and oxygen. The stubborn retention of it, even in the face of extreme physical hardship, can hold a man’s soul in his body long past the point at which the body should have surrendered it.”
“Every life deserves a certain amount of dignity, no matter how poor or damaged the shell that carries it.”
I have been unequivocal on this issue from day one … people who vote, and voted, for Trump are no more, and no less, than anyone who didn’t. They are not ‘more stupid’, ‘more ignorant’ or more anything other than more for Trump than many of the other people.
Trump is an unequivocal asshat.
Some, and I mean a small sliver, of those who support Trump are asshats <let’s call them Deplorables>.
As we watch Trump supporters twist themselves into pretzels trying to defend immature lack of leadership and some misguided behavior <with scraps of good ideas being wasted within> some of us want to smirk and say “I told you so” … or say worse.
Most people who took the time to vote, who took the time to look around and think about their world, the world around them and maybe the world in a bigger sense <be that just America or global> deserve some respect. And they absolutely deserve human dignity … which anyone, regardless of who you voted for, should protect and recognize as one of the things that unites people in a democracy <albeit it oddly divides us at exactly the same time>.
While I think Donald Trump is a moron … I cringe every time I hear someone describe the people showing support for him as ‘uneducated’ or focus the description on “no college education.”
This implies they are stupid.
And it also implies everyone with a college education is not stupid.
Trump voters, as with 99% of any country’s population, are not stupid <and, I would note, people with a college education may actually own the market of stupidity>.
His supporters are real people with real worries and real lives … and are not stupid.
I wrote this in ‘calling of the trumpets’ back in January 2016:
In the end he is selling a false ‘us versus them’ narrative and he is selling empty promises by offering past glory which he will somehow craft as a phoenix from the fire.
It all sounds good.
It sounds safe … and ‘safe’ always sounds good when you view the future and see … well … fog and not a clear horizon.
But the future never … let me repeat … never resides in the past.
And people, including Trump followers, know that in their heart of hearts but when no one but a bombastic blowhard is offering what appears to be a viable alternative … some people, some smart people, with anger of feeling marginalized and concern for their way of life will follow even an empty promise.
But, once again, that doesn’t make them stupid. In fact … as I read what I have written I am surprised more people haven’t flocked to this asshole. Because asshole or not … if someone thinks he can deliver on ‘winning so much you will get tired of it’ and ‘being great again’ being an asshole can be overlooked.
We need to recognize Trump followers not as the ‘unwashed uneducated’ but rather as people, listen to them, debate and disagree with respect. And maybe, just maybe, we can convince them that the best version of them resides in the future which most likely will not look an awful lot like the past but be just as good if not better.
Trump is a moron but the people who are currently following Trump are anything but morons. They are thirsty and he is offering water. I may personally not want his version of water but I think it is up to me, and us, to show why the water I would offer tastes better than the water he offers.
President Trump deserves the respect of the position … but he also deserves the criticism associated with how he assumes the responsibility of the position.
To date he has only earned the moniker of ‘moron.’
“As democracy is perfected, the office of president represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people.
On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart’s desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.”
But that does not make people who invited their hopes in him as morons. If we were to make such a link then … well … that would be a crowded room because how many of us have invested in some misguided hope at some point in our lives? <answer: 99% of us>
Google ‘why Trump won” and you will get about “160 million results in .6 seconds.”
The theories run from insightfully intellectually complex to scary simplistic drivel.
I would suggest that everyone take a second and go back to the “One Recession, Two Americas” study PewResearch offered us back in 2010.
You would end up seeing that about 55% of America “lost ground”, encountering real difficulties & consequences, and the other 45% of the country “held their own” — the recession was largely free of major difficulties.
That 55% not only ‘lost ground’ but they feel marginalized economically, personally <as a citizen>, American-ly <they feel America is being marginalized> and politically.
And because they ‘lost ground’ they became increasingly concerned about their country, their economic state, their families, their jobs and their future as well as the future of their kids
For that 55% their world view looks better, and very different, than the world that currently exists.
Where you live also is associated with how well you fared during hard times: Easterners are significantly more likely than residents of the South, West or Midwest to have better weathered the economic storm.
I should also note that a college diploma is a strong shield against hard times: nearly six-in-ten college graduates count themselves among the 45% who experienced fewer difficulties during the recession, compared with 38% of those whose educational attainment was a high school diploma or less.
Suffice it to say that for about 55% of the country the recession either stopped your progress or ground it to a stuttering progress. And that was in 2010.
Which means for a good 6 years those who “lost ground” have had to look around and watch celebrated wins <of which most did not participate in>, watch America social progress happen <of which often didn’t look like the kind of meaningful progress they cared about> and watch a government continue to make promises that only seemed to come to Life for … well … not the Lost Grounds.
And all the while they kept hearing people say “the lost grounders” lives are improving <and they wondered ‘who the hell are those people talking’ and ‘who the hell are the people improving’>.
I don’t need to make any high falutin’ intellectually complex argument with regard to why someone voted for Trump … I can go back to this one piece of research and say “here is where the 40some million people who voted for Trump resides.” They are the “lost ground” 55% of America all the way back in 2010.
And you know what?
They deserve dignity in Life and, it would seem to me, that ‘losing ground’ in any form or fashion … real or perceived … dents a person’s dignity <among other things> and that is just not that difficult for even my pea-like brain to understand.
In the end.
I want to be clear that simply because we may learn to understand and empathize with the issues other people, including Trump voters, may have that we shouldn’t maintain a constant vigil for HOW the issues are being addressed … to protect our rights, freedoms and … well soul.
And I mention the soul because debates between two people grounded in ‘here is what I think’ very often grinds its way down into a very practical and pragmatic argument … one in which important things like ‘soul’ get left out.
It is incumbent upon us to maintain steadfast vigil over who and what we want to be “when we grow up” as we grind away over issues in the here & now.
It is incumbent upon us to take on divisiveness of ideas, minds and desires with respect.
It is also incumbent upon us to remain vigilant with regard to the Trump administration and how it addresses ‘de-normalizing’ some of our American ideals that have remained steadfast for centuries.
It is incumbent upon us to recognize that the worst of Trump, & the administration, simply plays to the worst that is within some people … and it is incumbent upon us to state, simply & clearly & unequivocally, there is something better than the worst.
It is incumbent upon us, all of us, to recognize that Trump is an instrument of awareness.
Good bad, beautiful and ugly … his blunt childish simplistic rhetoric bares some of the truths we all have to deal with. But I would suggest it is incumbent upon all of us to not allow him to be judge & jury, nor should we be judge & jury for each other <Trump voters & non-Trump voters> … but instead we should encourage every individual, whether they voted for Trump or not, to look in the mirror for the judge & jury.
I don’t get it.
I struggle to find a real valid reason that anyone took a risk on a choice like Trump for America <present & future America> … regardless of how deep in a shithole you may think we are.
As noted in my opening quote … the fate of each one of us is inextricably linked to the fate of all. I am they and they are me … and that is just the way it is.
I will listen and debate and treat them with the dignity they deserve … they are no more, or less, a patriot than I.
I cannot judge the Trump voter and I do believe they deserve the dignity of their opinion, their thoughts … and their issues that in some way made them believe Trump offered some hope in resolving.
What I do know is that I can judge Trump, and I will, and I will do so vociferously to Trump voters as well as to the world at large … mostly because I know I don’t want someone like me to be president … I want someone better than me.
why do trump supporters say they like trump cause he ‘says whats on his mind’… like no shit man, i have people in my tumblr inbox who say whats on their mind all the time. i had a guy send me a message that said “vape on my dick”. thats whats on their mind and they said it. i’m not like “oh man… dude… lead us…”