Monday, January 2, 2017

About Six Months Too Late

NPR's Michele Norris lit into Trump's campaign on Sunday, talking to David Frum on CBS's Face The Nation about Trump's screaming racial code speak.

During a Face the Nation panel discussion on resisting Trump’s agenda, conservative columnist David Frum offered a sobering assessment about how the new president would impact the country.

“I am hopeful that Americans will rise to this challenge,” Frum said. “I think the message that they do not need to hear is, ‘Don’t worry, your grandparents rose to the challenge and therefore you can stay on the couch.'”

“I don’t think we do people a service by saying, ‘You know, there have been bad things in the American past before,'” the former speechwriter for George W. Bush continued. “This is our bad thing and it’s about a bad a thing as has happened in any of our lifetimes.”

Norris argued that Trump’s “Make American Great Again” slogan misses the mark for addressing current reality in the United States.

In the phrase ‘Make America Great Again’ there’s one word that if you are a person of color, that you sort of stumble over, and it’s the word ‘again’.” Norris observed. “Because you’re talking about going back to a time that was not very comfortable for people of color. They did not have opportunities, they were relegated to the back of the line.”

And this was a country that — to be honest — was built on the promise of white prosperity above everything else,” she added. “And for a lot of people, when they hear that message, ‘Make America Great Again,’ deeply encoded in that message is a return to a time where white Americans can assume a certain amount of prosperity.”

According to Norris, Trump’s win was made possible by white people who feel like they are “not at the front of the line.”

“And Donald Trump was able to tap into a message where people felt a lot of discomfort,” she noted. “That is somewhat retrograde. I mean, fear is not our brand in America. And that is so much sort of the bright vein that ran though the campaign.”

Norris is absolutely right, but where was this revelation in October or July or last January?  The people who pointed this out were shouted down, being accused of everything from being "the real racists" to promoting "white genocide".  They were ignored then.

Now?  Now we have an incoming administration run by white nationalists and a press that seems stunned by this fact.

What did you think voting for Trump meant, folks?  What did you think "Make America Great Again" meant?  By excusing it away as class-based rather than race-based, and pretending that Clinton's platform simply didn't exist at all and that she didn't care about "working-class Americans" when Trump somehow did, people like Frum aided and abetted Trump.

And sixty million plus of your friends and neighbors helped him because they pretended it was about anything other than race too.

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