posted on Nov, 26 2018 @ 10:59 PM
Many American’s who support Donald Trump have a hard time understanding why so many people are up in arms about Donald Trump’s Presidency. The
way they see it is, sure Trump is unconventional, sure he says things he probably shouldn't, but he is getting things done. Additionally, Trump
supporters feel like Trump, and themselves by proxy, have been attacked since before Trump even took office and there is some truth to the theory.
After Trump was elected there was a vocal minority of “Not my President” people who stated they would never accept Trump as their president.
Also, there was a push by some to get members of the electoral college to not elect Trump to the office. Plus there have been other extreme left-wing
pushes that have made it to the news further damaging the relationship between the right and the left. The fact of the matter is that Donald Trump
won the election to be president fairly and every American should have gotten behind that regardless of how they felt about Trump. All of this taken
together makes it increasingly difficult to see the world from another’s point of view.
My goal for this topic is to attempt to explain why many American’s have issues with Donald Trump in a way that Trump supporters may be able to
understand if not sympathize with. To get there first I need to explain a little bit of how the world currently works.
Over the past decade the world as a whole is moving away from democratic rule and toward autocratic rule. According to a recently released report ⅓
of the world's population currently lives under a backsliding democracy. Many of these backsliding democracies actually elect the leaders that
begin to dismantle the democracies they pledged to uphold. You might ask yourself why anyone would choose autocracy over democracy but in reality the
choice is never that black and white.
I am going to show you three broad qualities these leaders use to get into the good graces of voters and then build power.
First is projecting strength above all else. Authoritarian leaders must always project strength regardless if they are in wrong. The idea is to never
admit to being in the wrong or to back down. One way this tactic is carried out is through military parades like Russia, China, Venezuela, and North
Korea. But the projecting of strength doesn’t stop with military parades it is also bleeds over into personally projecting strength. Probably the
easiest example here would be Putin and his numerous photo ops where he is portrayed as extremely masculine. But Putin is not alone in this either
many other autocrats are guilty of the same behavior. These autocrats sale their strength as necessary to protect the populace from the perceived
enemies of the leader that only they can handle. Some examples include Putin dealing with the scourge of homosexuality within Russia and North Korea
keeping America from changing their way of life.
The second quality is the demonization of their enemies. They turn groups of people into nefarious evil doers that they and they alone, thanks to
their strength, can save the country from. In the Philippines Duterte rose to power because he claimed he was the solution to the drug crime in the
country. Since his election over 12,000 people have been murdered extra judicially. These perceived enemies are what autocrats need more than
anything to hold onto power. They usually find a group of people who feel like they are under attack and are not being listened to are sale
themselves as the champion of those people. Then they take a complex situation and present it in a way that sounds simple. If no real threat exists
they demonize groups of people that are already persecuted. When Putin was faced with a downturn in popularity several years ago he ramped up the
rhetoric against homosexuals and introduced many new laws against them. In other countries like the Philippines it was drug users and in Hungary it
was stoking fear and anger against immigrants and muslims.
The final quality of autocrats is to weaken institutions that could possibly have any check on their power. Journalists within these countries are
routinely threatened, imprisoned or killed. In more advanced authoritarian regimes they will limit the power of courts and legislatures. In recent
years the countries of China, Turkey, Hungary, and Venezuela have all consolidated power under the executive branch. In Poland, they recently lowered
the retirement age of judges to force out judges that disagreed with the leader.
Trump has all of these qualities. He wanted a military parade. While on the campaign he was an unapologetic strongman saying things such as
“We’re going to bomb the # out of them”, “I want to punch him in the face”, “Torture works, trust me, it works”, etc. He refuses to
admit when he is wrong and will double down on even obvious lies like his crowd size or that 3 million immigrants voted illegally. He has demonized
immigrants, muslims and other persecuted groups but also picked fights with Canada, Robert De Niro, the NFL, Puerto Rico, and others. Trump has
openly expressed admiration for many autocrats such as Putin, Kim Jong Un, Duterte and others. While at the same time he has launched continual
attacks on institutions such as the media and the judiciary. He tells his followers to not believe anyone but him. Whenever a judge rules against
him he goes straight to the media or twitter and demonize said judge. He attempted to use the DOJ to go after his political enemies.
So, to sum up. Many Americans view Trump as a wannabe fledgling autocrat and for good reason. Trump supporters on the other hand really like Trump
because he is offering simple solutions to problems they care about. You know, things like “Build the Wall”, “Lock her up”, etc. The major
problem is that due to Trump making lying and rejecting reality mainstream the two sides can’t carry on meaningful debates any longer. Since there
are no common facts any longer we can’t even politely discuss the issues. As an example, many Trump supporters still say that Trump didn’t fire
Jeff Sessions even though the President asked him to resign.
Non Trump supporters don’t understand why the Trump supporters are content being lied to and then still defending anything the president says even
if it is a lie. Well, it's obvious really, Trump has demonized the media, and the left so nothing they say is valid in their eyes. His rhetoric has
already caused damage to our country, hopefully we can repair it.
One last question for the Trump supporters. Would you defend Trump if he started a program similar to Duterte’s in which drug dealers and drug
users could be killed extra judicially? I’m sure you are saying to yourself “Of course I would never defend that, that’s stupid”. Don’t be
so sure. In the Philippines one of the common defenses Duterte’s supporters use when questioned about the murder program is “Why does the media
spend so much time talking about the killings, the news only wants to talk about the bad stuff, why don’t they talk about the good he is doing like
the infrastructure investment?” Sound familiar, it should.