Thing is, Trump supporters don’t vote against their best interests, democrats just don’t understand the interest they care about most.I wonder.
America is terrible at giving its citizens dignity and meaning. We have, with the internet, the power for more people to be appreciated than ever before, yet we use it primarily to shame each other. Shaming Trump supporters for being “ignorant bigots” is the worst thing you can do, because their entire motivation in voting for Trump is to alleviate the shame they are already carrying. If you add to their shame, they will dig in further.
It is, obviously, difficult to think about ways to reduce shame on a national level but we have to start finding ways to have more appreciation for each other, even those we disagree with. At the most basic level we can start by not explicitly shaming people. We can stop calling them ignorant. We can stop mocking them on the internet. We can stop calling them out on twitter.
"America is terrible at giving its citizens dignity and meaning." Well, it doesn't try. The Catholic Church tries to help people find dignity and meaning. America sets you free to find your own, in whatever way you like. The American project is about liberty: your dignity is assumed to be guaranteed by your status as a free man or woman.
Whatever esteem you aspire to beyond that, that's for you to build somehow. How? That's up to you, too.
Along the way, you're expected to shift for yourself somehow too. Here's where the trouble comes along: increasingly because of technology, those who earn first in unskilled and now in many skilled ways face competition from the poorest places on earth. Increasingly, because of technology, you also compete with robots that can work 24 hours a day at a fraction of the cost of a human worker.
If you think dignity comes from work, you're in bad shape. But dignity is at least tied up with work, because work is how you get resources, and your status in the community depends on your ability to wield resources. We expect you to pay for everything you use. If you own a home, we expect you to pay taxes on it every year, and will take it from you the minute you can't. If dignity includes having security in a place in the world, it depends in America on having the ability to earn adequate resources.
Probably it does everywhere, really, no matter what schemes are set up to mask that fact.
It's an interesting stab, in any case. The author, one Emma Lindsay -- good Scottish name, that -- deserves credit for having written it. Just the moment at which she proposes to look beyond racism, rather than stopping with it as sufficient cause to condemn, is stunning coming at this time and place and from someone of her particular 'tribe.'
Maybe there's some value to all this Trump business after all. It's at least stimulating some interesting thoughts.