Why Trump Won and Why that Matters
Over the course of the past decade we have seen America go from a Country where people were interested in getting to know one another and understand each other’s differences — to one that is ruled in the press by identity politics.
In a world where it’s either black lives matter or blue lives matter or you don’t matter, We have lost the basic notion that — at the end of the day regardless of who we are — we all share one thing in common — we are all Americans.
As we lost that critical thing we share in common — our Americanness — we have become a nation of tribes that do not want to discuss even the most basic of issues with one another.
This presidential cycle has been one of the ugliest we have seen in history dating back to 1824. Both candidates said in numerable things that shouldn’t have been uttered — yet became commonplace, in the course of a battle, for the White House that was unparalleled in terms of its engagement through media and digital, in our time.
While the left ignored minority and white segments of the population that have become disenfranchised by their rhetoric over the course of the past decade, Trump started promoting a message of inclusiveness and engagement through inner cities that actually focused on rebuilding America.
I know this because I was actually in on the fence voter before Our group of Republican inner city leaders met with Trump earlier this year — which motivated me to join the Trump campaign afterwards.
Here’s the detail from that meeting, if you’re interested in reading it.
For many Americans we live in a world where we already have civil rights, gay rights and we’re now on the cusp of establishing American Muslim room to move Akin to how Catholics had to Fight for acceptance, in the 1920s. However the fear mongering from the left that Trump would try and undo major segments of American policy — that have already been made law years ago — became a battle cry for many members of the the Democratic establishment.
For Republicans and conservatives across racial lines that simply didn’t make any sense.
Further, as opposed to actually discussing issues of corruption, poverty, minority income disparity and inequality — Hillary chose to continue to Bang the drum of “how dare you say anything offensive”, while we suffer inner cities with effective rates of unemployment higher than 20% in many cases — as well as an increasingly impoverished suburban and rural America that suffers from physical limitations of movement and significant challenges in getting basic employment.
What Liberal America doesn’t seem to be able to deal with is that identity politics are a nice to have, but they do not pay your bills at the end of the day; they will not put your child in school; they will not pay for his or her lunch; and they don’t keep a roof over your head, at the end of the month.
From specific American lenses there were also a multitude of issues the Democrats refused to deal with — unfortunately these are issues that meant quite a bit to portions of minority America who voted with their conscience. Minority participation in the vote this year which showed some of the highest turnouts by blacks, Hispanics and even American Muslims for the inclusive message the Donald Trump was selling.
Trump campaigned in inner cities; spoke at black churches; talked about the 50% of Americans that earn $50,000 or less; spoke to rural America; outlined Job creation and developed policy that plans to engage across multi faith lines and even put the engagement of American Muslim religious leaders to fight back, within the anti-Isis platform.
For African-Americans there were huge problems stemming from the Clintons creation of incarceration laws in the 1990s that put significant portions of African-American father is in jail across the course of a generation.
For Hispanic Americans it was Challenge of how do you vote for a Democrat when Obama deported more Latinos than any of his predecessors. It also became one of how you deal with criminal elements of society that seem to be able to cross the border with impunity.
For American Muslims, like myself, it became the tenuous issue of how can you look at the Democratic establishment seriously when they will not take ISIS seriously? How can you vote for Hillary win every single Isis attack on our soil increases Islamophobic attacks by over 5000% (by my data modeling) and is the largest reasoning for every day Americans to stare at American Muslims with suspect. For me it became even more disconcerting that the Democratic establishment did very little to stop terrorism while allowing continuing negative narratives to proliferate.
For white America, Hillary became emblematic of beltway corruption as her response to shocking revelation after revelation wasn’t a response to the accusations but rather the wry rebuttal — it was Russia’s fault.
That kind of lipservice By the Democrats is something that mainstream America could not ignore. However Hillary’s campaign chose to ignore these issues over and over again even as they were raised with her battle cry of “sexism, racism, intolerance “.
The data and the big mistake
while 538 spent the summer giving you prediction maps based upon public data that were largely inconsistent with the way people voted or even how America thought — We developed data models that showed up to 62% of Americans being favorable to Donald Trump based upon big data modeling of actual voter data.
The mainstream press ran with this and pushed a consistent message that basically said that we have a statistic — so you’re wrong. Give up.
What I think the mainstream press forgot that without big data, any statistic can be a lie — and any voter who’s listened to their local politicians promising a 75% chance that the MTA will deliver a subway line on time is wrong.
What this leads us to is a interesting historical parable. John McCain lost the election in 2008 because he did not want to engage with social media as he thought it made him look “unpresidential”. Hillary Clinton did not want to engage with the needs of mainstream America because — in her mind — the real financial issues mattered less than identity politics.
This unpresidential mistake by Hillary resulted in not only an upset but a landslide victory for Trump who currently holds 306 electoral votes — more than Obama won.
But what about the anger?
The results of the election have been shocking to a large segment of the Democrat establishment who are actually reflecting some of the intolerance the one might have accused members of the right of prior to the election — The angry protests that included shutting down highways and obstructing conservatives from getting to rallies has now spilled out into large scale demonstrations exhibiting the ire of Democrats at the outcome of the election.
While it’s well within your constitutionally establish rights to protest; it becomes hateful when protester starts attacking Trump supporters or beating the elderly.
In case you missed it here’s a sampling of what’s been going on in the streets on the left:
And while ironically I have to use the term “deplorable” to describe this behavior — I do have to highlight that there are problems stemming from the right as well:
None of these things are acceptable and are emblematic of the problem that we have in America — where an intolerant left screaming under the banner of identity politics keeps shouting down anything they disagree with while angry sections of the right respond with identity politics in kind.
So, what now?
The left needs to stop assuming that anyone who is white is either sexist, racist or xenophobic.
This includes Members of the left and the newly identified “intolerant left”who also attacking and marginalize due to the further tribalization of their own identity politics.
Example: my LGBTQ activist colleague, Pauline Park having to deal with bullying for simply exercising her right to vote.
The left needs to start paying attention to minorities with more than lipservice and addressing issues if they want to continue to be relevant in the next few election cycles.
Meanwhile we need to start discussing the “intolerant left” which is the left’s own biased and bigoted problem.
The left assumes that because they scream about tolerance that they are not capable of intolerance themselves — The distinct irony here is that by tribalizing identity politics they have effectively turn Americans into microgroups of the left that do nothing more than throw their own “microagressions” and aggression at the right and themselves.
While it’s necessary to discuss the problems on the left, as conservatives we need to start having discussions on the right to start figuring out how we can move away from this horrible labeling that has gone on for too long and start bridging the gap between races again.
At the end of the day we need to not forget that we are all Americans and that is the one singular thing that binds us together as a people — regardless of where we come from; what our races; what our religion is or what we believe.
As conservatives we also need to do the one important thing that Americans have always done and that’s extending an olive branch. The only way that we can solve these issues is together.
You may have liberal friends, neighbors, coworkers or relatives. I know I have all of the above and the tapestry of my life is filled with people of all the leaves across all races and all party lines.
What I can say is that by having that kind of diversity — I have a better understanding of people and it allows me to be a better person and ultimately a better American.
America is hurting right now — and in order for us to heal we need to be better Americans to one another.
So what I’m asking first to all of my conservative brethren and to my liberal brethren as well is simple — reach across the aisle and get to know one another.
Reach across the aisle and break bread. Reach across the aisle and find the reason why you both live here and are both an integral part of America.
And finally, to my fellow conservatives — take a moment and try to explain why from the conservative perspective why we see very little to fear in a Donald Trump presidency. It’s going to take a little time for America to heal — it serves the purpose if we use conversation is a salve to make that healing faster.