Sometimes I wake up and think this is the day. This is the day that collectively as a country we realize that Donald J. Trump is beyond unfit to run this country. This is the day that everyone is calling for this man to be impeached. This is the day White America will wake up and finally say “alright, this is getting ridiculous… even I’M not that ignorant.” And then I remember…
White America is that ignorant, has been that ignorant, and from the looks of things, will remain that ignorant.
Sometimes I’ll read transcripts and wonder what the hell was Trump talking about? Sometimes I’ll even go as far and watch press conferences and STILL wonder what the hell was Trump talking about?
From irrelevantly bringing up Peyton Manning when talking about the reception he received after a standing ovation, to not knowing who the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) was and THEN asking the black woman who confronted him about the CBC if she could schedule a meeting with them (because you know… all black people know each other) Donald Trump has shown that he does not contain the intellect nor the social awareness to be the leader of the free world. He lacks all the necessary experience required for an individual to hold such an authoritative position. He lacks the credibility and respect that authoritative figures are normally due because he himself, is not a man who respects others. He often targets the press and it’s “fake news” but he indeed is the fake news that he appears to be so strongly against. Also, his ties are excessively long. Like seriously, there needs to be some research done on political figures who wear their ties that long and what their beliefs and values entail. I can almost guarantee you, anyone who wears their tie like how Trump wears his, HAS to be nothing but trouble. HAS TO!
So long tie and all, Donald Trump currently boasts a 45% disapproval rate but also possesses a 45% approval rate. And although that is by far the lowest approval rate a new president has ever received, 45% is still way too much for Donald Trump. Which leads me to the question at hand:
How on Earth are people still rallying behind Donald Trump?
Is it ignorance? Is it the empty rhetoric that “I mean, he’s my president. I don’t want him to fail, because if he fails, we all fail,” that some churches find themselves preaching? What exactly is “it?”
That “it” has to do with class. That “it,” has to do with religion. That “it,” has to do with what’s “traditional.” That “it,” is ultimately whiteness.
Whiteness has been a normality in American society since this country’s existence, yet it is a complex notion that cannot be necessarily pinpointed to a certain instance. Whiteness does not have history–rather it’s more of an identity than it is an actual reference to one’s culture. Whiteness is typically affiliated with certain characteristics and certain notions displayed over the course of time because of it’s lack of having it’s own distinct culture. All one can do is look at history, and based on what white people have done physically, mentally, and spiritually over the course of time is what whiteness is to be identified as (in America, respectively). While there are many things we can dissect about whiteness, this is what I chose:
Violence, Privilege, and Assimilation.
Whiteness is violence. Which is why films such as Die Hard starring Bruce Willis are praised for a white male killing anything in his path but a Tupac lyric talking about pulling up on another man is crucified
Whiteness is privilege. Which is why white people can have the luxury of being completely oblivious to what’s going on in the world, and why people of color have no choice but to educate themselves in an attempt to stay aware.
Whiteness is being able to assimilate into the norm. A case where this is extremely prominent is when talking about Irish-Americans, who (because of their skin color already being white) were able to assimilate into the American belief of whiteness, while completely dropping their true ethnic identity.
Whiteness is ruling the Trump administration. For nearly a decade, America has been deprived of exploiting it’s true colors and that is because a black man was at the helm. There was too much cultural and social change emerging into America. America that was a country ran off “Patriotism”and among all the other things that have built and characterized America for so long were finally slipping. Things such as racism, white dominance, strict views on gay marriage, strict barriers on immigration, war on terrorism and many more values that America held near and dear to their heart were slipping in the eyes of the common people. Coming straight off the terminal end of a president who was for the white common man (George Bush) we were entering about a new era of reformation and America didn’t know exactly how to cope with that. With all the cultural and social changes in society, white male dominance was fleeting. It was passively on it’s way to being seen as something that was no longer going to be the normality that it was for centuries. Until Trump came along.
Whiteness was able to identify with Trump because the values that Trump instills are the values that they possess. Misogyny? Yes please. Racism? Duh. Manipulation? Say less. These are all characteristics that we have seen white people in power posses throughout America’s history. So when it made it’s re-emergence in explicit fashion through Donald Trump in 2016, white people took on whiteness with a blunt approach, opposed to it’s discrete systematic regime.
What infuriates me the most about whiteness rallying behind Trump, is that there are actual poverty-stricken white individuals who are identifying with this whiteness. Instead of poor white people creating a bond with the other oppressed and neglected of people of America, they choose to cling to their whiteness. Believing that it will save them. This rhetoric dates as far as the nineteenth century when America was approaching the Reconstruction Era post-legal slavery. Poor white people and black people were discriminated equally, with slave masters and white elites not giving a damn about neither groups. Poor white people were heavily discriminated against, lived in terrible housing conditions, and in some instances even worked as slaves. Poor white people felt like what we felt (and still feel today). And as you know, misery loves company. Therefore, a coalition before the two groups was created. Poor white people and black people were in arms, and that ideally struck fear into the hearts of the slave masters and white elites. With a mutual respect on the rise between the two communities, this mutual respect was going to serve as a problem for the racist agenda for the white elites. In order to tear away the respect, the elites had to implement hate between the community. Starting with the poor whites.
Slave masters started compensating poor white people to oversee black slaves, establishing a sense of authority over black people. So subconsciously the notion that “Hey, I may be poor and white, but at least I’m not black,” began. And it has been that way ever since. Instead of a coalition forming that binds the neglected people of America against the greedy elites that run this country, the elites have divided us through the creation of Whiteness. Something that continues to evolve into this evil monster and seeks to once again, dominate American society.
This evil monster called whiteness is attempting to once again makes itself the norm. Whiteness is trying to exclude anybody who can not identify with it out of the picture. Whiteness and it’s “Make America Great Again,” rhetoric is trying to revert to a time where “Religious-right,” values were the end-all, be-all of American society.
We can no longer afford to allow whiteness to represent American society. Whiteness does not represent my blackness. It does not represent my friend’s religion. It does not represent my sisters choice to do what she wants with her body. It does not represent everyone properly. So it’s time we let America’s greatest asset represent us once and for all: Diversity.
And if there is currently an administration in office that refuses to represent everyone equally, then the voice of the people will continue to be condemn the people of this administration.
It seems like everyone who has reached the age where you’re able to decipher what is good and what is bad, all understand that Trump is pretty bad. The only thing prevailing Trump at this point is whiteness. White people are fearful of a new era–an era where we could transition from a black president to a woman president. This type of change is startling for a society who is used to a certain demographic leading it’s country. In the opinion of the white common man, he has been neglected far too long for his own comfort. He has been neglected to the point that he is willing to defend Trump no matter what comes out of his mouth, all in the name of whiteness. It’s sad. Very sad. Whiteness? Clinging on to it? It’s a disaster. Total disaster. It must be stopped. Everybody thinks so. (It’s no way you can convince my impression wasn’t spot on.)
So yes, whiteness is the only thing keeping this Trump administration afloat but when you have committed republicans jumping off the Trump administration ship, it also could serve as the very thing that sinks the Trump administration.