By Angelo Lopez on March 7, 2016
In the past few months, I've been reading with increasing dismay about the success of Donald Trump's influence on the Republican primaries and the American political debate. I deeply disagree with his remarks on immigrants, Muslims, women and refugees. A large part of Trump's current political support comes from a group that used to vote for the Democratic Party but since the 1990s has voted consistently with the Republican Party: the white working class. For the past several decades, white working class people with a high school degree or less have struggled economically as globalization has taken the jobs that used to be their access to a secure middle class way of life. Trump has capitalized on their fears by offering them scapegoats that have nothing to do with their economic plight. Eugene Robinson wrote in an article for the Washington Post:
Trump’s entire platform, such as it is, can be reduced to “us vs. them.” The overwhelmingly white, largely blue-collar crowds that fill his gargantuan rallies are buffeted by harsh economic realities and have good reason to be anxious about the future. Trump doesn’t give them solutions, he gives them scapegoats.
Recall that he kicked off his campaign for president last year with an outrageous libel against undocumented migrants from Mexico: “They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.”
In truth, immigrants are significantly less likely to commit crimes of any kind — including rape — than native-born Americans. But facts don’t matter when Trump chooses to point a finger of blame.