The Vindictive Politics Of Trump’s Base Spotlights Decency Gap

The Trump supporter who claimed Trump isn't "hurting the people he needs to be hurting" is emblematic of the growing divergence of morals in red and blue America.
Supporters of Donald Trump, one holding a sign that reads, “LOCK HER UP,” cheer during a campaign rally in Leesburg, Va. Trump — Monday, Nov. 7, 2016 (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)

Supporters of Donald Trump, one holding a sign that reads, “LOCK HER UP,” cheer during a campaign rally in Leesburg, Va. Trump — Monday, Nov. 7, 2016 (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)

Updated April 23, 2019: After the release of the Mueller report, a Trump supporter told MSNBC how he feels about Trump: “I think he’s a despicable human being. But he’s done a lot of good things for the country.” Below is our article from during the government shutdown about the decency gap between the right and the left.

“I thought he was going to do good things. He’s not hurting the people he needs to be hurting,” said Crystal Minton, a secretary in a Florida prison, when The New York Times asked her opinion on the government shutdown.

Just let that line sink in for a second and consider the implications of this Freudian slip. Here we have an American citizen who voted for a president because she wanted him to hurt her fellow Americans, a glaring example of the decency gap we previously discussed, and just assumed that if the Americans she hated got hurt, things would be better for her. She doesn’t want a better life, no, she wants a better life at the expense of others’ suffering.

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It’s an absolutely perfect summation of the conspiratorial nature of the modern GOP and their hatred of anyone outside their rapidly shrinking tribe. Convinced that everyone is out to get them, they frame their worldview around getting even with the supposed agents of evil in the guise of their friends and family and vote accordingly. In other words, her lament is that she wanted others to suffer. She didn’t expect to be on the receiving end of hardships. She was hoping her more liberal relatives, or better yet, minorities would.

Ignore for a minute that many of Red America’s woes are entirely self-inflicted and constantly self-exacerbated. Just think about the mindset it takes to view your own fellow citizens with so much pent up hatred and frustration. When I cast a vote, I’m looking for a politician who will help us fix the Rube Goldberg machine made of fiscal black holes that is our healthcare system. I want this politician to help us fix our roads, pull school systems out of their 70 year stupor, shake up the unsustainable college bubble, and fix our military’s digital and strategic shortfalls.

At no point when I was filling out my ballot during the midterms did I think “Hey, you know that Crystal Minton of Marianna Florida? Screw that woman. I wonder which one of my choices will really stick it her and her family.” Why? Because that would be monstrous! I don’t want her or any other American to suffer. I want them to have decent healthcare, send their kids to good schools, and help give them options for jobs of the future that our Republican leadership is both unable to understand but still determined to piss away with their retrograde legislative and judicial malpractices.

Not Crystal though. She wants to make sure that my community doesn’t get the money to help clean up the damage after historic wildfires. She wants to make sure my taxes keep going to help Florida fund the shortfalls from slashing its residents’ taxes to the bone and keep her prison open. She’s never met me and never will, but she really, really hates me because I’m an immigrant who lives in California and works in tech, the kind of despicable globalist libtarded cuckflake her Facebook timeline says should be thrown out of the country instead of cramping her and her like-minded friends’ patriotic style.

What hope does America have not just as a global superpower, but as a modern, civilized country when tens of millions of its citizens vote to move it forward and tens of millions more are just out to hurt their friends, neighbors, children, and strangers they’ve never met but the very mention of whom makes them nauseous with hatred and rage? How will they continue to live in a country where they seem to loathe just about everyone and everything?

And how will we find a common language as they hyperventilate to social media propaganda designed to make them feel like victims of a nonexistent conspiracy to shift blame for gutting their own communities in the name of supply-side voodoo economics and its glorious but nonexistent trickle down wealth?

These are not abstract rhetorical questions left as an exercise to the reader. They’re very real concerns as we move forward and contend with decades of our increasingly paranoid, nihilistic and solipsistic elders and those who fall into the rose-tinted, conspiracy-laden version of the world they inhabit, participating in the political discourse not to build a future but to fight a cold civil war against other Americans who don’t even know they’ve been drafted as enemy combatants.

This country is too big, too powerful, and too geographically isolated to be felled by outside opponents without destroying much of the Northern Hemisphere in the process. So it seems that since no one else was up to the job, Republicans decided that they’ll fight us over here so they don’t have to fight real enemies and real problems over there.

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Opinion // Donald Trump / Republican Party / Trump Supporters