To answer the question about why people, continue to support Donald Trump, you would have to try to put yourself in the mindset of his supporters. Whether we like it or not, he is appealing to a lot of people. The questions we really should be asking are who is voting for him and why?
I believe timing is important in terms of Trump being in power at this time in history. I also believe that Barrack Obama’s term in office ironically contributed to Trumps rise to power. Obama’s presidency was perceived by many to be a “game changer.” People of colour and marginalised people everywhere raised their hopes, they believed they would finally be represented politically.
Although Obama did a lot of good during his presidency, I am not sure those changes were felt by the underprivileged. This I believe contributed to a complete sense of hopelessness.
Some might say that Trump was in the right place at the right time.
Racism is another contributing factor in Trumps ability to become the President of America. There is a considerable percentage of racists in America who saw Obama’s presidency as a step too far, so when Trump came along, he was seen as someone that would reclaim control in the White House.
After Obama, people were unsure what was ahead for them, but knew they didn’t want to return to the ‘status quo’ of politics in America. Along came Trump, who didn’t speak political jargon, made claims that he was better than all the politicians who have not helped the people. He promised that he cared and could make a brighter future for the squeezed middle classes.
Trump shamelessly promoted himself with passion and arrogantly said he would fight for the people. As he had a so-called track record of being a self-made millionaire and he convinced a number of people that his experience would ensure he succeeded in making life better for the people of America.
He continually told everyone how he understood their problems and he, unlike others that went before him intended to fix everything that was wrong with America. His claims of being fearless, wealthy and that he couldn’t be bought along with promising that no one could stop him got him votes. His constant bashing of the media and claims that everyone else was lying (fake news) to the people fed into people’s existing mistrust of all politicians.
Why can’t Trumps supporters see what we see? Trump is a textbook narcissist, incapable of caring about anyone but himself. His decisions are based on his ego and fed by his own insecurities which makes him extremely dangerous.
He is happy to claim full credit for everything. He has no awareness and doesn’t realise or care that he is promoting and inciting hatred and racism. He is incapable of understanding that he is creating a highly volatile and abusive culture that took centuries to overcome. He continues to promote fear and insecurity in his followers. His agenda is completely ego driven. He sees himself as the ultimate power and without a doubt will continue to abuse his position.
Why people voted for Trump may be incomprehensible to many, however, it is not the only country to vote unbelievably for a misogynistic egocentric man. Brazil recently appointed President Jair Bolsonaro, a far-right President whose views alongside Trumps would not sit well with most right-minded people.
Why? is the question we should all be focused on getting an answer to. Could part of the reason men like this manage to gain so much power be as the result of not providing equal access and opportunities in education for all?
I believe, what we are witnessing all over the world is a response to inequality. People are tired of feeling powerless, abused by those who are supposed to represent them. There is growing resentment between the haves and the have nots’ as the gap gets even wider and the realisation that those in power will never do the right thing. People want change and are looking for real leadership. They are sick of being on no one’s priority list. Seeing daily on social media all they could have but never will.
Social media has provided access to information on the corruption that exists in every corner of our society. This has compounded the hopelessness people already feel. People experience inequality and injustice everywhere they turn along with no hope of a better life for themselves or their family. With poor wages, two tier health system, unaffordable education, unattainable housing, it is getting harder every day to simply survive and it doesn’t seem to matter who comes into power as life for those at the bottom of the ladder doesn’t improve.
It would appear that we are at a tipping point and the upheaval we are witnessing in the world today, has at its core, inequality. There is a cost to us all when just one person isn’t treated fairly. What politicians don’t seem to realise is the urgency in addressing the inequality and the repercussions if they don’t.
I believe greed is the cause of a lot of our problems. It has and continues to result in immoral corrupt power-hungry politicians, elitists who are out of touch with the people on the ground, big pharma, who are prepared to poison us to make money and the heads of industry, making it impossible for people to access what should be basic human rights, like decent homes, good healthcare, education childcare and fair wages.
Politicians only see things through their own filter of privilege and education. This seems to prevent them from really understanding the plight of others. Do they really believe that our homeless children today, are going to grow up well-adjusted contributing, happy productive members of society?
Time for change
The lessons (and there are lessons in every situation) as far as I can gather, is for the world, not just America, to stop tolerating and accepting corrupt self-serving. Politicians. Maybe a place to start is to put all our politicians on a normal working wage. Remove their entitlement to more than one pension and let them wait like us until they do actually retire before they have access to it. Hold them accountable for their actions and if after an agreed period in the job they do not deliver on promises made have them removed. This would level the playing field. They should have the same access to education, housing, and healthcare as the rest of society. This will help to change how they see the services available to everyone and motivate them to improve them.
Bottom line is, there are real and deadly consequences to inequality. Although I don’t think we can ever rid ourselves of inequality, we should always be striving to.
June Kavanagh – 8th November 2018