our favorite media outlets—you know, the ones that insist that there are “good people on both sides”—have spent the better part of two years trying to understand the Trump voter. We’ve all been subjected to the results: dozens, even hundreds, of articles detailing the lives and thoughts of the poor, aggrieved white people who’ve allegedly been “left behind” by forces such as “globalization” and “Democrats.”
Now that Donald Trump’s policies are starting to ravage the very core of his base, we’re starting to see the follow-up to these experiments in aggrievement normalization. From The New York Times to CNN, we’re being treated to deep dives on the white people who voted for Trump, found it hasn’t paid off, and are now questioning their choices.
I am here for none of it. If it took missing a check due to the government shutdown for you to realize that voting for a bigoted conman was unwise, I have no sympathy. If your business is being hurt by the tariffs ordered by the know-nothing “Tariff Man” you happily voted for, my deepest wish is that your business fails, thereby creating a market opportunity for a hardworking immigrant your president disparages.
The shutdown is going to accelerate the number of Trumper’s-remorse articles we see. Last night, The New York Times unleashed a doozy: the sob story of a Florida town that got battered by Hurricane Michael and is struggling to keep its economy, based on government prison jobs and farm subsidies, afloat. It’s the kind of town Mitt Romney would say was full of “takers” if the town was predominately black. But it’s predominantly white, so, of course, most of the town votes Republican.
The Times wants us to know that Trump’s shutdown is hurting these people and they’re confused as to how their dear leader could be doing this to them:
The shutdown on top of the hurricane has caused [Crystal] Minton to rethink a lot of things.
“I voted for him, and he’s the one who’s doing this,” she said of Mr. Trump. “I thought he was going to do good things. He’s not hurting the people he needs to be hurting.”
That’s what Trump voters sound like when they say the quiet part out loud.
All of the “economically aggrieved” Trump voters made the same immoral bargain. They calculated that allowing Trump to harass and terrorize “other” people—nonwhites, women, gays, children, whatever—would result in more money in their pocket. Now they want me to be sad when the racist offset-check they were counting on doesn’t clear? You must not know about me.
Where’s the story about all the people living in Florida who also got battered by hurricanes, and are missing paychecks because of the shutdown, who didn’t vote for Trump? Where are the stories about the innocent victims of Trump’s policies, instead of stories about his enablers? I’ve read a lot of stories about how much Donald Trump and Ann Coulter want the Wall. I’ve heard a lot of commentary about how the “American people” want “compromise.” I think the media is willfully missing the strength and dedication of the opposition to Trump’s policies. Where’s the story about the people who are missing checks and remain uncompromising in their resistance to Trump’s bigoted vanity slats?
Once again, we’re being told that a small minority of white people who voted for Trump hold all the power in deciding what gets done or built in this country. It’s not just about the shutdown. The media are obsessed with telling the stories of these selfish, antisocial people who caused this monstrosity, instead of the stories about the people who are rising to stop him. Here’s The New York Times again, explaining why we all should care about this “betrayed” Trump voter:
“It’s killing us,” said the chairman of the company, Pat LeBlanc, 63, a Republican who voted for Mr. Trump. He now expects the president’s tariffs will chop his 2019 profits in half. “I just feel so betrayed. If we fail because the company is being harmed by the government, that just makes me sick.”
Across the industrial United States, including in the crucial political battleground state of Michigan, such complaints are intensifying as the trade war disrupts factory operations that depend on imported parts.
And remember “butterfly man ,”the guy who voted for Trump and his wall until the wall threatened his butterfly sanctuary?
I’m a lifelong Republican who voted for Donald Trump for president in 2016. I want our immigration laws to be enforced, and I don’t want open borders. But Mission is not a dangerous place. I’ve lived here all my life. Here at the National Butterfly Center, 6,000 schoolchildren visit each year. Girl Scouts come here when they camp overnight just a mile or so from the Rio Grande. When the president says there’s a crisis at the border that requires an action as drastic as building a massive concrete wall, he either knows that it’s not true or he’s living in an alternate reality.
Before this controversy, I voted, and sometimes I expressed my political views on Facebook, but this issue got me involved in activism for the first time…. If Donald Trump runs for a second term, he will not get my vote.
Trump is out there authorizing the use of tear gas against toddlers, but this man didn’t get “involved” until Trump threatened … insects of color? He doesn’t even care about “butterflies,” he only cares about his butterflies, and you know that because no butterfly conservationist would vote for an avowed climate denier who doesn’t believe in science. This man needs to flap his way out of my face before I find a swatter.
Part of the obsession with these people comes from the grand media mea culpa over 2016. They “missed” the Trump voter in the run-up to the last election, so now we all must suffer their woebegone tales until the media feels they’ve set things right.
But in their journalistic rush of self-flagellation, they’ve created a faux balance. The Trump voter is a minority faction in this country, predominately white and insular. A relentless focus on their concerns shifts the conversation towards people who—explicitly now—just want the government to hurt the “right” people. And that’s not where the national conversation is.
The Wall is broadly unpopular. Immigration is broadly popular. The tariffs are broadly unpopular. Appointing a Supreme Court justice that had been accused of drunken attempted rape made him the most unpopular Supreme Court nominee in recent history. “Balanced” coverage would reflect that most people dislike what Trump is doing, and the people who do support him are part of a cultural minority with extreme viewpoints