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The Trump Effect and Going Forward

Trump supporters see Trump exactly the same way many people saw Obama – Hope and Change.

by Deedra Abboud in Mindset, Political, Social Views, Solutions
November 2, 2016 3 comments

Almost everyone I know personally has at least one family member who is a Trump supporter. A few of my own family members, but not all, have been Trump supporters for some time.

I found it upsetting, even baffling, that my family, who I know love me, could possible back a candidate that literally said he wanted to ban me from entering my own country. They even started making negative comments about Muslims, often in my presence, having forgotten I am Muslim or categorizing me as the ‘exception.’

This has been the same experience for every person I know that changed his or her religion to Islam. Like most people I know, including many non-Muslims with Trump supporter family members, for most of 2016 I have just written them off as being small minded or even brainwashed by the media.

Outside of my family, I have encountered many people who could not be more nice and caring but were Trump supporters – people in the fields of naturopathy, homeopathy, energy healing, and even Law of Attraction. It blew my mind that people talking about natural healing and all humanity being aligned with ‘one source’ could also be filled with fear and hate of ‘others.’

This is particularly baffling because releasing hate and fear is at the very center of Law of Attraction teaching.

After the second debate, the last of my family members were completely pro-Trump, with the exception of one undecided… but not yet ruling him out.

That was a ‘come to Jesus’ moment for me.

Right then I realized the I had to be looking at this all wrong.

The explanations that all Trump supporters are simply full of hate could not be true because my family has never demonstrated that to be true.

The explanations that all Trump supporters are from a particular economic group could not be true because my family does not fall into only one economic category.

The explanation that all Trump supporters are uneducated could not be true because my family is all over the board on education.

The explanation that all Trump supporters are conservative could not be true because my family has never been particularly conservative. Neither is all my family particularly religious. Christian, yes, but reading the Bible constantly, or going to church every Sunday, is not the norm for the majority of my family.

The explanation that Trump supporters have not traveled or interacted with people from other places could not be right because several members of my family have traveled throughout the United States and to several other countries as well. Most of my family does not even live in the same state, much less the same city, where they were born or raised.

The explanation that Trump supporters are pro-white or have no real relationships with people of other ethnicities could not be right because many of us have married or have children with non-white ethnicities or immigrants.

So I decided to go on a quest to find the answer.

Anyone who knows me also knows that researching to understand things I do not understand is a personal passion of mine. I can become very obsessive and spend hours upon hours reading, studying, and questioning – sometimes even forgetting to eat or make time for sleep.

Such a quest requires separating myself from all the things I think I ‘know’ and being open to alternative explanations or ideas that may be completely contrary to my ‘belief’ system – what I have been taught or conclusions I have previously made based on my experiences or observations.

I had to start looking at the explanations as irrational and untrue.

I then had to look at the Trump support as THE rational thought.

It was difficult at first to say the least. While people I don’t know might be crazy, there are people I know who support Trump that are not crazy.

So if I assume people who support Trump are rational (obviously excluding the white-supremacists and some of the other extremists), I had to work backwards in the thought process to get to the root of the rationale.

In the end, I came up with the reason for Trump’s unprecedented popularity (other than an intense hatred for Hillary, media’s proliferation of conspiracy theories, racism, and prejudice). I say unprecedented because no previous politician could have survived this long, much less thrived as he has, using Trump’s strategy.

Trump Symbolizes ‘Our Turn’

Trump may be ‘elite’ but he is not a ‘political elite.’ Now, there is a difference. Trump shows constantly he is not like the ‘political elite’ in his speeches and actions. Annoying the ‘elites,’ especially the ‘political elites.’ is Trump’s specialty and Trump supporters love him for it even more.

Trump inspires people. He expresses to them exactly how they feel. For the first time, someone vocalizes their struggles as though he understands them, not like he is pandering to them.

After years of feeling forgotten, neglected, betrayed, and robbed, Trump, and only Trump, speaks to them directly. Trump tells them he will make things better. He gives them hope

Trump makes them believe in possibilities again, possibilities that things could be better for them and their families – not just economically, but in every way.

More jobs. More justice. More liberty. Most of all, that their way of life will no longer be under attack from ‘others;’ that he will get the ‘elites’ and the ‘political elites’ in check.

After years of being told by the media and politicians that they are under attack by non-Christians and atheists, that their life disappointments are the fault of immigrants and politicians, and that conspiracies are everywhere, Trump has assured them he will change all that.

No details. Just assurances. And they want to believe it is possible regardless of any evidence to the contrary.

If ‘elites’ are controlling the world, then Trump knows the system and can do what he says despite all the laws saying otherwise – because they believe ‘political elites’ have always ignored laws to do whatever they want. Trump’s an ‘elite insider’ but he is on the side of the ‘common man’ s he will use his power for their ‘good.’

While many hear Trump sounding like a potential dictator, Trump supporters hear a man willing to use all his strength and skills against a powerful enemy – corrupt politicians intent on continuing their corruption.

Trump supporters believe Trump might need to use authoritarian power in order to succeed for them but they don’t believe he would ever use it against them.

And even if he did, Trump supporters really do agree they don’t have anything to lose by trying something radically different since they feel nothing politicians have done has worked for them over the last decade or more.

At the very least the ‘political elites’ will get some black eyes along the way.

And that’s the true source of Trump’s enchantment. Trump gives people hope who are convinced their ‘way of life’ is under attack or feel they have been robbed of the ‘American Dream’ – that finally it is ‘their turn’ to get a lift up.

It doesn’t matter what race, what ethnicity, what economic status, what gender, or what level of education. Trump gives them hope that, despite everything, he alone sees and hears their pain – that he truly relates to their frustrations and fears.

Most Trump supporters have either never felt a politician really related to them or felt betrayed by politicians they believed in before.

Trump supporters see Trump exactly the same way many people saw Obama – Hope and Change.

In fact, for Trump supporters, Trump is the embodiment of most presidential slogans for the past decade:

Hope and Change (Obama) + Country First (McCain) + Government Of, By, and For the People… Not the Monied Interests (Nader) + Reformer for Results (Bush) + Prosperity for American Families (Gore) + The Better Man for a Better America (Dole).

Trump supporters defend Trump, no matter what mistakes he makes, not because they have lost their moral compass, but because he’s not a politician. They expect (even appreciate) when Trump fumbles – just like they would if they were running for president with no experience themselves.

Trump supporters understand everyone has done some embarrassing things in their past because, unlike politicians, they were not trying to control their image for political gain.

Trump is the ultimate underdog in the eyes of Trump supporters – a modern David against Goliath.

It’s not that he’s rich, it’s that Trump is liberated: beholden to none and without social restrictions or limitations – just like they dream to be themselves.

Trump supporters are filled with hope and living vicariously through Trump – and loving every minute of it.

The ultimate “stick it to the man” feeling.

Going Forward

Why is this understanding important and what does this mean going forward?

We have ‘voted for the lesser of two evils’ before. In fact, most presidential elections since, and including, Bill Clinton have included this argument. Families have been divided by candidates and political parties before.

Families have made agreements not to talk about politics before. Families have not spoken to each other until after the election before.

What is happening to families now is well beyond social media arguments and blocking each other on Facebook.

The ill-feelings are running deep. The loaded comments to each other are cutting like knives, causing wounds that the end of the election season will not heal.

Regardless of who wins this election, the rest of the country is wounded. Some will be like wounded animals, angry and ready to lash out, and not just because of the election results.

Whether because of the comments by politicians or the comments by our friends and family, we are all hurting in some way.

This election has been decided. Not because some grand conspiracy but because everyone has made their decision for whom they will vote. Nothing will happen over the next few days to change that. Even the undecided voters have decided, they just don’t want to admit it to themselves or others.

It’s time to move on. Time to understand the presidential election is what it is, as it has always been, just one political office among many political offices with a power over us that which we have some control but is not really what our life is about.

If there is an ‘us against them,’ the ‘us’ is the people around us – the people we care for or could care for if given the chance.

Our life is about how we live it. How we conduct ourselves. How we treat ourselves. And how we interact with our friends, neighbors, co-workers, employees, strangers, and our families.

Politicians have very little impact on us in those areas. That is where our power lies. That is where we have the most power to impact our own lives, the lives of others, and our country as a whole.

 

 

3 Comments
  1. Pamela Griffith says:

    I here you, I see your point ,so real but there is a design made my men of privilege that created this path.The level of hate and vile language is from a time that caused the door to reopen a mist a fog that captured the attention of those who blame others and self for how life has change.This genetation is fighting for what they feel belongs to them .Trump knew to engaged and encourage them only to release what they wanted to hear.This fog filled message offered a opening of a door that pushed open other doors that generated your trump supporters disgraceful disgusting some wanted some thing better unfortunately others are what you saw phyisically comfortable in pushing fighting people of color. White privilege is about to die but not without a fight .

  2. Nicely done. A good read.

  3. Jim Tubb says:

    Fantastic piece and excellent points.

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