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Hullabaloo


Wednesday, January 20, 2016

 
A black guy goes to a Trump rally

by digby


















This piece in NY Magazine is a must read.  An African American man who helped officiate the Black Brown forum in Iowa attended several different gathering of both Democrats and Republicans and wrote about.  Specifically he describes the difference between being at every other event and a Trump rally. Let's just say they are very different. There were almost no African Americans in the big and he was being stared down by numerous attendees.

He meets up with one other black person and young woman who is visibly upset at being insulted by one of the attendees.
An hour after watching Trump hit the stage to the tune of "Eye of the Tiger," here she was. I didn't know her specific background, but she kept pointing to her brown skin whenever she mentioned what was said to her. I asked if it was a fellow student who questioned why she was there and she replied that it was an "old person." She mentioned that many of the students were present because teachers were giving extra credit for attendance. But it was clear that wasn’t the sole reason for her presence. "We moved to Iowa from Seattle when I was 11," she said. Her family farmed, she worked on the farm, she worked with tractors — she was as Iowan as anyone in that room. And because of that, she felt she had an investment in what someone running for president had to say about her state, and perhaps her family’s livelihood.

Truthfully, I wanted to go find the old bully that said this to her. Why couldn't someone have said that to me instead? As she was telling the story, she was fidgety. As we often do in times like this, she confronted mild trauma with humor, laughing off aspects of the encounter. Her response to the question was, "If by that do you mean do I look like the wrong color to support Donald Trump, then yes," followed by a sarcastically half-bowed "why, thank you."

After listing all the ways she was from Iowa — including aspects of farming that I’d never even heard of — she paused and then said, "but apparently I’m not authentic."

Her story was the unfortunate — and predictable — coda to an evening spent listening to Trump easily instill (and reinforce) fear and distrust in thousands of people, not only about the direction of the country, but also about people who are "different." He proudly gave a scriptless, teleprompter-free speech — on the grounds of I’m not like these other politicians — that consisted of sermonlike rambles punctuated by discriminatory preaches to the choir, many of which entailed getting the demographics of this country back to where they once were. Repeatedly, he’d hold press clippings in the air with the fervor of a minister controlling his congregation. Trump’s views for the future of America didn’t require detailed explanations, fact-checking, or empirical research to send the room into a frenzy. He simply presented options that allowed his followers to most comfortably suspend disbelief. Two days later, at the Republican debate in South Carolina, the GOP looked more like the party of Trump than ever.

Driving back to Des Moines, with President Obama’s State of the Union on the radio, I thought about the last 48 hours spent traversing Iowa, which felt like a microcosm of America. I'd been in the same room as some of Iowa's most liberal and conservative citizens and listened to five presidential hopefuls — three Democrats and two Republicans — feed the people of Iowa the full spectrum of politics, from truth and hope to empty promises and fear. I’d listened to Sanders speak unfavorably of Clinton, Clinton make fun of Trump, Jeb speak ill on the entire Democratic party. But what I saw, and heard, and felt during two hours with Trump was a different beast: as real, as frightening, and as authentically American as it gets.
Yes it is.

I couldn't help but think of that Trump supporter's comment about the Muslim woman who stood up in the crowd: It would be like a KKK member showing up at an NAACP meeting.

They are unselfconsciously white supremacist.

.