Racism and the Economic Hoodwink 6


Donald Trump flickr photo by Gage Skidmore shared under a Creative Commons (BY-SA) license

Well, I commented yesterday on Trump’s “shithole” comment. Not much new there, honestly. In many ways, the repetitious displays of racism radiating from the White House make consistent insightful analysis difficult.

Decided to watch Don Lemon’s show last night, just to catch up on different opinions. Some toad-lookin’ fella thought it was a good idea to parrot the “It’s all about the economy!” line.

We’ve heard this view before, that trump supporters’ real motivation stems from their collective concern about economic prosperity and the jobs flowing from a thriving, unshackled free market. I’d say “the economy” is a vague pretext for supporting racist policies and racist language among Donald Trump’s supporters.

How to while away the time when we are frolicking in the land of not very plausible deniability? Simple. Let’s stop and think about this for a second. Republicans have lived in a liberal atmosphere alongside their Democratic counterparts, and so conjuring a vague reason (such as the economy) to support racism so that they might maintain a sliver of “traditional” American values is important to many of them. To many others in the Republican party, maintaining that cover is much less important. Or not important at all.

But that’s the problem with code language. The economy is one such code phrase that the Republican party has used for some time to signal to ardent bigots that the white tide is at hand. It has worked out beautifully for the GOP in a two-fold way.  Open, scheming racists will interpret it through the lens of achieving a very hyper-conscious goal.  The common man gets to fool himself that he isn’t being racist, that only a pro-corporate atmosphere and a healthy economy are what matters. Is the “common man” also hyper-conscious in his racism? That probably depends on the individual. But the everyman might view himself differently than someone like David Duke.

Dog-whistle politics helps to further very specific goals while appealing to a broader base. It helped Donald Trump out immensely during the campaign trail, who combined dog-whistle language with open bigotry. He constantly invoked the danger of Mexican immigrants, essentially claiming they were inclined to commit various criminal offenses, and that they were taking jobs away from American citizens.

Not to mention, he exploited the existence of ISIS to further prejudice against Muslim Americans. Any way you slice it, Donald Trump is a bigot that appeals to bigots. Living in the land of laughable deniability doesn’t change that. Even though the act of denial helps to feed dog-whistle political maneuvering, it’s still the same old racist bag. Well, maybe not quite the same old bag. Once the behavior is normalized enough, “the economy” won’t be used as vague pretext. Maybe an even thinner pretext will be used in the not-too-distant future. “I feel like I’m a bit crowded, let’s just get ’em outta here. I’m not racist, not by a long shot. I just like to spread out, having a little leg room. Nothing wrong with that. That’s 100% American.”

Someone blow the whistle on this guy already.


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6 thoughts on “Racism and the Economic Hoodwink

  • sportsdiva64

    Trump has made it so wicked easy for racists go show their true collors. They don’t need to hide those white robes . Look at Charlottesville . They did it in broad daylight . He only seems to highlight countries with p.o.c. or those don’t have any business dealings with the Trump companies. He is an embarrassment to all Americans and some of his supporters just don’t get it which is even sadder.

  • anne leueen

    I saw “the Post” tonight. Great film. Looking back on the Pentagon papers and the importance of the press in breaking that scandalous story I reflected on the current situation with the dismissal of the mainstream press as “fake news” makers. and the racist issue…. I can’t event start on it. If I had a whistle I would blow it!!!

    • sportsdiva64

      I remember when the Pentagon Papers came out. I never thought that at almost 65 years old that I would see in my country what’s going on. I never thought I’d say this, Trump is like one of those “banana republic dictators”. I am so ashamed of my country right now .

      • anne leueen

        It crossed my mind several times during the film as welll. As a Canadian I hesitate to comment on Trump but I feel badly for the US. This really is an historic turning point when the US is, I believe, no longer the number One economic superpower. There is an opportunity for the US to re-invent itself and move forward in a dynamic and positive new way but sadly, again just my pov, it is heading in another direction that is not positive and the man at the helm is the one who is leading that charge.