Great post by Dave Winer, about the black woman who wore a baseball cap saying “America Was Never Great” and then received death threats and abuse on social media.
She’s right. American never was great. Not in the way that people who support Donald Trump think it was. What they liked about America was to other Americans oppression, enslavement, death, genocide, ethnic cleansing.
What Trump really means is that he wants to make America white again. As it was before we had our first African-American president. It’s a racist dog whistle. I should have seen it coming, we all should. For all the joy and relief in getting over the race barrier in 2008, for other Americans that was defeat. Seeing a President as someone who had power over you, and for that person to be black must have been too much of a stretch for some.
One of the things that the Trump campaign has surfaced for those of us who don’t live in the US is the extent to which Obama’s election was seen by so many as illegitimate. Even after his re-election in 2012. So the apparent popularity of his candidacy with some people is explained by two things: one is fury and despair at being impoverished and sidelined by neoliberal capitalism; the other is naked white racism.