This election has divided the nation. Some steadfastly refuse to associate with any given supporter of Donald Trump. For these people, support for a particular political candidate says everything.
‘Racism’ has been one of the more popular buzzwords these past few months. There’s no shortage of people who hold the thought that he and his supporters are universally racist.
Surely, if Trump’s supporters are willing to support a candidate they perceive as racist, then his supporters must be the same way. Media outlets spent the entire election cycle promulgating the notion that Trump is racist. As a result, it becomes easy — almost habitual — to associate his supporters with these same characteristics.
However, this election was not an indication of the country suddenly becoming rife with evil and racism. The belief that Trump was elected because his supporters are racist is statistically unfounded. Nate Cohn, a writer for the New York Times, wrote that “Clinton suffered her biggest losses in the places where Obama was strongest among white voters. It’s not a simple racism story.” Trump won by flipping historically blue states like Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. All these states voted for Obama twice.
Trump’s voters did not succumb to the people who denigrated them. If one had a different opinion — or if one was a Trump supporter — he or she was racist, evil and deplorable. Not surprisingly, ad hominem insults did not persuade voters to abandon their candidate.
As Bernie Sanders said days before the election, “I do not believe that most of the people who are thinking about voting for Mr. Trump are racist or sexist. Some are, but I think most are people who are hurting, they’re worried about their kids, they’re working longer hours for lower wages.”
Come January, President Trump will become a reality. President Obama, after his first meeting with Trump, told reporters “I believe that it is important for all of us, regardless of party and regardless of political preferences, to now come together, work together, to deal with the many challenges that we face.”
By shunning and disparaging Trump’s supporters — 60 million Americans — without knowing anything else about the individual, people are disregarding our current president’s plea for unity. Once Americans can realize they aren’t enemies, the future will be bright.