Trump’s Support Isn’t About Poor Whites, It’s About ALL Whites

Trump’s Support Isn’t About Poor Whites, It’s About ALL Whites

[OPINION] Ultimately, this is in many ways is a stunning rebuke of President Obama politically and individually

by Lincoln Anthony Blades, November 9, 2016

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Trump’s Support Isn’t About Poor Whites, It’s About ALL Whites

As a nation, America has always had a profound misunderstanding of the intersection between race and national geography. To this day, many people—from laymen to professors—are still comfortable framing slavery, the post-reconstruction creation of the KKK, and Jim Crow as signals of the “vast” disparity between the “thoughtful, considerate and moderate” White liberals of the North, and the “ignorant, hateful and openly prejudiced” White rednecks of the South.

By relying on this tired trope, we’ve grown comfortable with framing the desire of open prejudice as a need of that specific demographic, which clearly sets them apart from the “good” White people who are educated and bright enough to understand the evils of populism.

So, last night when it was announced that Donald Trump was elected to be the 45th president of the United States in a thorough victory over Hillary Clinton, many gave in to the knee-jerk reaction of wondering how Trump’s poor, White, uneducated voting base could actually cobble together enough moderates to eek out an election. But to ponder that is to ignore a greater, and far more jarring reality.

From the moment Trump oozed down the elevator to indict all Mexicans as rapists, he activated a White populist appeal that breaks geographic, generational, and even gender barriers. And this is what most pundits were incredibly wrong about. Trump’s xenophobic and racist rhetoric didn’t only appeal to America’s slow-witted, poor, uneducated, anti-academic, uncultured, backwards “redneck” demographic, it resonated with all White people.

Just prior to election day, Nate Silver, a hard-math pollster and founder of FiveThirtyEight, predicted that Hillary Clinton had over a 90% chance of winning the election. Using advanced analytics and cold hard statistics, he calculated that Trump had, at best, a 5% chance at winning the White House.

But there was one thing Nate Silver’s math couldn’t predict. In the words of Ta-Nehesi Coates, the enduring solidarity of White supremacy.

Do not give in to the ideology that Trump’s victory was handed to him solely on the backs of angry, anti-establishment voters. Trump’s victory was handed to him by White voters who spanned different socioeconomic realities. White voters chose Trump over Clinton 58% to 37%. While it was expected that Trump would win educated and uneducated White men, what is so stark is the margin by which White women chose Trump over electing America’s first woman president.

In the words of Lexi Alexander, “66% of White women voted for a man who grabs p**sy without consent because their white privilege is worth more than feminism.”

With the numbers being what they are, a Trump presidency wasn’t going to be defeated solely by minority voters—note: 94% of Black women voted for Clinton—or third party voters. This was squarely on the shoulders of a mass White populace who were more committed to electing a demagogue than Clinton.

Ultimately, this is in many ways is a stunning rebuke of President Obama politically and individually. With a Republican president and a Republican Congress, we will see a rollback of multicultural policies and a nomination of conversation, right-winged Supreme Court justices. And all of these actions are not the desires of so-called “white trash;” this is the will of the larger white American population.

Lincoln Anthony Blades blogs daily on his site, ThisIsYourConscious.com. He’s author of the book, “You’re Not A Victim, You’re A Volunteer.” He can be reached on Twitter @lincolnablades and on Facebook at Lincoln Anthony Blades.

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