“For better or worse,” says Pruitt, “when we talk about poverty, we focus on black poverty, and we focus on Hispanic poverty. We’ve collapsed our nation’s poverty problem into our nation’s racism problem and it leads us to turn a blind eye to rural poverty.”
Hate Didn’t Elect Donald Trump; People Did
Over the summer, my little sister had a soccer tournament at Bloomsburg University, located in central Pennsylvania. The drive there was about three hours and many of the towns we drove through shocked me. The conditions of these towns were terrible. Houses were falling apart. Bars and restaurants were boarded up. Scrap metal was thrown across front lawns. White, plastic lawn chairs were out on the drooping front porches. There were no malls. No outlets. Most of these small towns did not have a Walmart, only a dollar store and a few run down thrift stores. In almost every town, there was an abandoned factory.
My father, who was driving the car, turned to me and pointed out a Trump sign stuck in a front yard, surrounded by weeds and dead grass. “This is Trump country, Tori,” He said. “These people are desperate, trapped for life in these small towns with no escape. These people are the ones voting for Trump.”
My father understood Trump’s key to success, even though it would leave the media and half of America baffled and terrified on November 9th. Trump’s presidency has sparked nationwide outrage, disbelief and fear.
And, while I commend the passion many of my fellow millennials feels towards minorities and the fervency they oppose the rhetoric they find dangerous, I do find many of their fears unfounded. I don’t find their fears unfounded because I negate the potency of racism. Or the potency of oppression. Or the potency of hate.
I find these fears unfounded because these people groups have an army fighting for them. This army is full of celebrities, politicians, billionaires, students, journalists and passionate activists. Trust me, minorities will be fine with an army like this defending them.
And, I would argue, that these minorities aren’t the only ones who need our help. The results of Tuesday night did not expose a red shout of racism but a red shout for help.