Thursday, September 28, 2017

Why Attacking the NFL and its Black Players Was Vintage Donald Trump

I don't want to be too much of an amateur psychologist, but it looks to me like what floats Donald Trump's boat the most is attacking people. He is fairly ecumenical in his choice of targets. He goes after Republicans almost as much as Democrats. He goes after the press. He goes after Hollywood and people in the arts. But what gets his "base," most excited is when he goes after people who in liberal circles were defined as off limits- Blacks, Latinos, Muslims and immigrants. His overwhelmingly white supporters LOVE IT when he throws "political correctness" to the winds and risks accusation of racism to go after Black Lives Matter protesters, Mexican immigrants, Muslim refugees using language the most people could not risk airing on their jobs
Donald Trump knows this. It is one of the main reasons he was elected President. So it is no accident in the midst of a humiliating health care defeat, and rumors of the Russian influence investigating heating up he calls Black NFL players who took a knee to protest police violence "sons of bitches" and demands that NFL owners fire them. Trump doesn't only do this because he enjoys attacking people-- which he does-- he does it to get his base all excited that they finally have someone for who speaks for THEM as President, saying things they can only say among trusted friends.
Having a President who airs the subaltern racial resentments of America's white people so openly and crudely is new for the United States- Presidents, at least since the Civil Rights movement, normally appealed to white racial resentments in veiled language.
But so effective has  Mr Trump been in  using this for political gain that I expect he will have many imitators
And those of us who are the targets of this resentment are going to have a very bumpy ride for quite some time.

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