The American right has long been telling itself a simple morality tale that goes something like this: The white Christian establishment is the original source and continuing guardian of America’s tradition of liberty, free markets and limited government and minorities are a threat to it because they don’t share the same attachments. In their telling, especially minorities who come from quasi-socialist countries are preternatural welfare queens quite happy to suck from the government’s teat. One of the major arguments that restrictionist right-wing pundits make for clamping down on immigration in fact is that immigrants, hailing from non-Euorpean countries, dilute these American principles.
But Trump’s triumph shows this morality tale to be a fairytale, I note in my column at The Week. The reasons white Americans voted for Trump are complex, no doubt. But one big one is that they lapped up his promise of shielding them from foreign competition through a protectionist trade policy and a restrictionist immigration policy. In other words, they have no exceptional attachment to the free market, even though they have grown up in country that allegedly understands its wonders. As for government handouts, whites are just as eager for them as minorities, given that they don’t seem all that perturbed by Trump’s promise to maintain and even expand the entitlement state and even offer new handouts such as his child tax credit to everyone making under $500,000.
Indeed, they are so eager for the government to protect their economic interests that Trump’s anti-Constitutional social agenda did not bother them that much. Consider what America may look like under President Trump:
Trump vowed to end the “war on cops.” He ran as a law-and-order candidate who isn’t likely to have much use for reining in police abuse, especially if Rudy Giuliani is his attorney general. In fact, Trump has explicitly promised to expand racial profiling and stop-and-frisk policies. He speaks of African-American communities with casual disdain. He vowed to ban Muslims from the U.S.A.
He also wants a mandatory death penalty for cop killers.
If whites voted for Trump despite all this, where will the first line of resistance to all his anti-constitutional ideas come from? Not from them but from minorities, Trump’s main victims.
So Trump will likely unleash a new era of constitution-based minority activism, renewing the nation’s appreciation for the constitution. This is exactly what America’s (white) Founders intended.
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