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Brexit-Trump Comparisons Miss Key Points

Tuesday, November 22, 2016 21:02
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(Before It's News)

TransAtlantic bigotry

by: 

Linn Washington Jr.

 
“Political language is designed to make lies sound truthful.” — George Orwell, author of “1984.”

The election of Donald Trump as U.S. president, upending projections of pollsters and pundits that predicted his defeat, has triggered comparisons with Brexit, the vote earlier this summer where British citizens voted to leave the European Union.

Yes, the Brexit vote also upended projections of pollsters and pundits that Britons would vote to remain in the European Union.

And yes, the campaigns for Brexit and the Trump presidency each employed similarities. Each campaign utilized ‘make our country great again’ slogans.

Further, each campaign also targeted immigrants as the source of deep-seated societal problems particularly in the employment arena. Trump targeted Mexican immigrants while Brexit targeted Eastern European immigrants in Britain primarily from Poland along with Muslims and blacks.
Brexit support sign in former home of author George Orwell. LinnWashingtonPhotoBrexit support sign in former home of author George Orwell. LinnWashingtonPhoto
 
While accurately citing similarities, too many of the news media comparisons on both sides of ‘The Pond’ have been simplistic, infused with failures to sufficiently contextualize the array of forces entangled in the stunning Brexit and Trump votes.

Comparisons on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean, for example, have downplayed the upsurge in racist attacks, primarily targeting blacks and Muslims during the immediate aftermaths of both the Brexit and Trump victories.

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