The problem with generalizations such as these are that the desire for a simple answer to an unanswerable question overwhelms the realities of knowing the minds of millions. The idea that Trump’s voters are too dense to grasp that Trump’s policies aren’t good for their economic interests presupposes that white working-class or poor voters have the ideas about what their interests are that liberals assume they have. The truth folks who want to make these sweeping assumptions is — and I know this is shocking to many on the left — white working-class people are just as diverse in their ideas as anyone else. The linked article about Trump’s proposals not helping his voters is a comfortable liberal summary of events which haven’t happened and policies which will not look anything like they did on the campaign trail.
The thrust of this piece is not different from most post-defeat op-eds: Trump’s followers are The Other, but we should nod and pretend they’re NOT insane, stupid white guys who hate all non-insane, stupid white guys. “…racial resentment — which was likely less overt and more subconscious than some might think…” sure sounds like a male writing about a cliche’d angry feminist: poor thing doesn’t know her own mind, but WE all know what’s REALLY driving her.
The assumption that everyone who didn’t like Obama but liked Trump is, of course, a racist is the core, unshakable belief of so many on the left today, an assumption that can’t be proven, and one that’s just too damn comfortable for some folks to even question. The Other has to question their assumptions, The Other has to change. For centuries Our People have been white males, but that is changing. But it’s interesting how those who would traditionally be The Other now embrace the lazy thinking of the whites of the past; we Just Know that The Other is driven by racism they aren’t even aware of but which we can see clearly.
We’ll all get along when people stop trying to figure out how to hide our condescension and loathing of The Others when we are forced to deal with them, and actually respect everyone, not as part of a group, but as people who are as complex and hard to understand as one of Our People. I can dream, can’t I?