by Ricardo Huerta
In his daily blog over at the Mail on Sunday, British journalist Peter Hitchens offered his reflections on America’s election of Donald Trump. Citing increasing hostility towards rural Americans and their concerns over unfettered illegal immigration, the country’s crumbling morality, and the dissolving of American family life, their complaints fell on the deaf ears of American liberals, which in turn paved the way for Trump’s victory. Hitchens could only write, “I told you so.” I strongly recommend reading his article. It is illuminating in every way and I hope to further extend Hitchens point.
How did we get here? How did our country elect arguably one of the most unfavorable candidates in electoral history? Speculations have varied across the political divide. The left wing refuses to accept any culpability for the rise of Trump and has instead cast blame on both third party tickets and their voters, on an “outdated” voting system, and on an allegedly increasing presence of xenophobia, racism, homophobia, and sexism in our country. This arrogant rejection of blame for the rise of a presidential demagogue has frustrated many Americans. Once again, the left wing doesn’t get it. Once again, the left wing is out of touch with the electorate.
Not only did American liberals pave a path for Trump to the White House—he could never have been elected without their help—they unknowingly fought on his behalf by disenfranchising white rural voters. This alienation did not happen overnight. It began in the early years of Obama’s presidency but culminated in a heated election where simplistic labels dominated the facts and name-calling replaced reason.
By refusing to listen to the concerns of white rural voters, liberals agitated a sizable portion of the population and, on election night 2016, the silent majority struck back—they voted the elites out of office. In doing so they fought against the liberals who branded them as xenophobes, racists, sexists, homophobes who were unworthy of being listened to. Electing Trump was the only way to force political leaders in Washington to listen to them.
The left wing, astonished by how a candidate like Trump could have actually won the White House, is in denial of its culpability. Many have taken to the streets in protest of Trump’s election, hoping that they might be heard and that by some act of God, Trump will be removed from the office he is to inherit Jan. 20. These protests only further demonstrate the left wing’s unwillingness to listen to the other half of this country.
As Trump nears the beginning of his term as president of our great republic, American liberals have two options: continue to label their political enemies as something they are not and in turn risk the possibility of a two-term Trump, or listen to the concerns of rural white voters and prove that the Democratic party is a party of working class voters, not just college-educated liberals.
Until the latter of these two options is chosen, I believe liberals in this country will continue to experience the astounding electoral losses America witnessed on election night.