The Deplorables Are Living In A Powerful “Theoretical” Country
So, what’s going on here? Where did these Trump supporters get these insane ideas from? Well, that one woman in Jordan Klepper’s segment said it herself: Facebook and Twitter. These deplorables are being fed a gluttony of conspiracy theories through memes on social media. This content is kind of shit that Curt Schilling posts on his Facebook page, but waaaaaaay more implicitly racist.
Yet the ideas and lies in those memes ideated from somewhere. Social media and fake news websites can fester such hate, but theorist ideation runs deeper. There’s a genesis to these Facts Don’t Matter non-thinkers and their dissemination of disinformation.
Blame it on Fox News.
(It’s amazing how news comedy shows are now more enlightening than cable news.)
Nevertheless, both segments are scary. Even giving validation to these outright lies by calling them “theories” is a disservice to people who use their brain. The spew that came from those conspiracy theorist Trump supporters aren’t even theories — well, not completely at least. Those deplorables do have strong bigoted belief systems, and their extreme emotional responses to life in America is fueling Trump’s rise in the polls. They’ll believe anything, as confirmation bias has created a chasm of ideologies for all groups.
But the thing is, the theories the deplorables push aren’t even theories to begin with. It’s literal nonsense. Theories need to have a support system of connecting ideas, and that web is supposed to lead to an end game; a goal achieved by lying, deceiving, and taking what’s not rightfully theirs.
Let’s key-in on that last part for a moment (more on the end game later): The emotion behind taking what’s not rightfully theirs is why so many whites feel disenfranchised, unprotected, abandoned, and frankly threatened (“they wanna take our guns!”) by their own government. Three in four Americans think our government is rampant with corruption. 55 percent of Americans either don’t or barely trust our entire federal government. Wages have been stagnant for over 30 years. When lower-income whites steeped in a bigoted environment are sold American society lottery tickets, better known as “the lily white picket fence American Dream” as a child, and it doesn’t come true, persuading those same people that it’s the fault of foreigners is a layup. It’s not hard to see why the demagogue outsider is gaining on a lifelong politician in the 2016 election.
Loaded with anger and self-pity, the deplorables are lashing out. Some are concocting “theories” to aid and comfort their nativist, facist cause, and again, they’re not even legitimate theories; they offend me not only for their ignorance and bigotry, but for their stake at legitimacy, which is evidently sticking. There’s no room at the table for that bullshit though. This is the most critical election since 1864. We need to use real information to help make our choice for president. Without critical discourse based in reality, the United States will do themselves a UK and Brexit all fifty states into dystopian madness. I’m aware I’m writing into a liberal void at this point, but much of the blame is with cable news network producers, hosts and journalists not doing their jobs.
Prompting these “theories” into outright legitimacy — or enough to be believe — through the same social media platforms where real information exists crosses wires in harmful ways. Here’s a popular “theory,” and one we just watched, for instance: Barack Obama is a Muslim and may have been involved in 9/11. It’s definitely a conspiracy theory, as branded. But let’s break it down: A group of radical Muslim men carried out 9/11, and Barack Obama was indeed alive on 9/11, so along with 8 billion other people alive on 9/11, he’s a suspect. There’s your web of ideas. Your awesome conspiracy theory.
Sir, there’s no “bottom” here but your own being showed out on Comedy Central. Theories must have an obvious end game — Stevie Wonder faked being blind for fame; the U.S. faked the moon landing to beat the Russians. There’s no end game and nothing consequential to the aggregate idea that Muslim Obama did 9/11. What would it explain, and what was it for? There’s nothing in Obama’s life that suggests he could be that man. If Obama was somehow a deep cover secret jihadist agent carrying out massive terrorist attacks, well, fortunately for everyone, there haven’t been any while he’s held court in the Oval Office.
Unlike that deplorable non-theory, however, Obama as a black American president is hugely consequential, and because our country is still segregated in varying ways, the symbiosis between fear and racism festers and infects whites. Obama scares the shit out of white people because they are racist.
The power of this centuries-old, deeply rooted racism, which Donald Trump is mobilizing to terrifying effectiveness, has lead to the open and proud denial of these facts: Barack Obama is an American citizen — something that Trump “officially” agreed with during a press conference for his shitty new hotel. Yes, that was A Thing! That in and of itself is an indictment of our civil discourse, swallowed whole by partisanism. To continue: Obama’s been elected twice to the presidency, fair and square; no hanging chads or Supreme Court decisions. In public, Obama is a openly Christian man, albeit far from an evangelical one. (He’s totally an atheist who’ll come clean in his less prominent years.)
These are facts that the majority of Americans know, and more importantly, believe unquestionably. They need to be restated, however, until they’re washed into the deplorables’ minds, and in those who are unsure what to believe amidst media chaos and the mercurial struggle between fact and fiction. Please side with fact and defeat these wannabe theories/non-theories.
Facts are ideations of truth. We, as people, have craved the truth for as long as we’ve been sentient. But first, we need to be given reasons to believe the truth. We all have a sense of journalism ethics. We all have a sense of skepticism in us. Sometimes the latter overtakes the former in nasty ways.
Through our collective conscience and guilt, the truth in us defeats lies every time, and if not immediately, in time.