This sample political essay explores the question of why people would vote for Donald Trump.
Why are people voting for Trump?
When Donald Trump announced his bid for the presidency, it was briefly looked at as a joke, but in 2016, the joke is on you, America. Leading in the poles by record numbers, the Republican party is scrambling to understand where they fit in Trump’s race. After all, Donald Trump has absolutely no experience in politics, a prerequisite for being president that has been egregiously overlooked. Throughout his campaign Trump has primarily relied upon fear mongering, xenophobia, bravado, name-calling, and position flipping to excite voters. The degree to which this has been successful has everyone else who does not fall for these tactics gaping at the vast expanse of Americans who do. The country is clearly divided, and the implications of Donald Trump’s fantastic success do not bode well for the future.
Trump lies about everything, including the KKK
Throughout his campaign, Donald Trump, “The Donald” has made faux pas after mistake after flat out insult. Often he refuses to apologize or even acknowledge a mistake. Often he uses the narcissist technique of projecting the mistake onto others through diversion. He also uses a consistent tactic of simply not answering the questions he is asked, and using the air time to go on a personal diatribe. However, Donald Trump caught flack when he was apparently unwilling to disavow former Ku Klux Klan grand wizard David Duke who had publicly endorsed him. Asked why he did not automatically deny support, he replied,
“I was sitting in a house in Florida, with a bad earpiece…I could hardly hear what he’s saying. I hear various groups. I don’t mind disavowing anyone. I disavowed Duke the day before at a major conference” (Bradner).
Ultimately, no matter what type of slip-up Trump makes he does not appear to get too riled up about it, and the flippant attitude he takes towards himself never extends to how he speaks of other people.
Trump voters like name calling?
The fact that a presidential candidate can resort to name calling as vulgarly as Donald Trump has, and only gain popularity through it goes to show how far the median moral character of America has fallen. The Washington Post reports,
By now, everyone knows assigning nicknames to opponents is Donald Trump’s trademark political strategy, and this week Hillary Clinton got hers. For as long as Trump is in this presidential race, and maybe beyond, Clinton will be, in the minds of some voters, “Crooked Hillary” in the same way that Marco Rubio became “Little Marco” and Ted Cruz has been “Lyin’ Ted.” (Itkowitz)
Name calling is one of the most brainless and petty behavior, which many adolescents refrain from doing since it earns them such low respect. So when did it become okay for adults to do so? Since the steady diet of American entertainment has become paltry reality TV? Or is anything a billionaire does suddenly cool?
Like the most vapid distraction tactics which seek to cause chaos rather than deal with reality, Trump’s name calling is not backed up by any facts. Unfortunately, such name calling only increases an already polarized populace, offering easy labels which amount to pure bullying. If Trump is elected president there is no reason to believe he would not use the same tactic on world leaders, or terrorists. This approach has been quantified in the past as an infantile expression,
In 2011, Jeremy Sherman, an epistemologist, described this Trump attack as a sort of “taxonomy, identifying what subspecies of winner and loser people are.” He said it was a symptom of what he called, “nounism,” a way to describe something or someone in a way that is an absolute. A chair is a chair. It’s not chair-ly, or chair-ish. In the same way, Trump has defined Hillary as crooked not her actions or her behavior, but her. (Itkowitz)
In this way, Trump is assuming the role of Commander and Chief of bullying. Too many Americans are lulled by the lies that money equals success, and that when you are successful you may act anyway you please.
If Trump’s confidence was backed up by real skill and intelligence it would be one thing, but it is backed up by posturing floating on money bolstered by narcissism. James Sherman emphasizes this name calling, “He’s able to do it with intransigent certainty…The content is secondary. He’s a master at this stuff it’s a permanent quality he sticks to you. And it’s a tar baby it sticks to you the more you fight it” (Itkowitz). That certainty is one reason so many insecure people find him attractive. Looking for easy answers which require no personal responsibility
Are people voting for Trump’s wall?
Trump appeals to the lower common denominator of the American public, racism, and blames immigrants for America’s problems. In times of economic downturn, or challenges in general, it is common for a country to become more nationalistic. However, usually the reasons for the problems are internal, and not external. Donald Trump’s advocacy for immigration reform which will make America great again is,
- A nation without borders is not a nation. There must be a wall across the southern border.
- A nation without laws is not a nation. Laws passed in accordance with our Constitutional system of government must be enforced.
- A nation that does not serve its own citizens is not a nation. Any immigration plan must improve jobs, wages and security for all Americans. (Donald J. Trump for President, Inc)
Adding insult to injury, Trump proclaims that it is Mexico’s responsibility to pay for the wall which would effectively stall their economy. It is common knowledge that America relies on immigrant labor for many jobs Americans will not do such as picking fruit, janitorial, meat processing, etc. It is also known that the amount of money which Mexicans working in America send back to their families in Mexico each year adds up to more than the entire Mexican GNP. However, Trump has said that he would threaten the Mexican government into paying for the wall,
In the memo, Trump said he would threaten to change a rule under the USA Patriot Act antiterrorism law to cut off a portion of the funds sent to Mexico through money transfers, commonly known as remittances. The threat would be withdrawn if Mexico made “a one-time payment of $5-10 billion” to pay for the border wall, he wrote. (Woodward and Costa)
This is blatant bullying, bad politics, and does not see the bigger picture of international relations. The risks inherent in this type of leadership could be absolutely catastrophic when applied to another country with more wrestling power than Mexico.
The woman card
It is clear that gender aside, Trump is only looking out for his own interests, but those interest decidedly lean against the interests of half the human population-women. Simply looking at Donald Trump it is clear he is a misogynist, but for those who need the evidence there is legion:
- Said women who seek abortions should be subject to “some form of punishment.”1
- Said former Secretary of State, Hilary Clinton was unqualified to be president, and is only playing the “Woman Card.”2
- Made inappropriate innuendos that he would date his daughter if he was not her father.
- After buying the Miss Universe pageant, there have been multiple reports of inappropriate behavior, groping, kissing, comments, etc. This often left women in tears, and feeling abused.
- CBS reported, “’I know you’re a woman in a man’s world,’ Res said Trump had once told her. ‘And while men tend to be better than women, a good woman is better than 10 good men.’…He thought he was really complimenting me.”3
It is clear from his statements about women that his is completely a misogynist, and will not represent women’s issues at the capital in any fashion except bikini fashion. Women who have and will vote for him are sending abusive men the message that they do not mind being second class citizens, that they to agree that men are simply better than women, and that they do not want to be represented anyway.
Trump and the Presidency
Donald Trump has not made much of an effort to share how his ideas would translate into policies which would govern, let alone improve the nation. When asked about the economy, his answer sums up much of his approach to policy matters,
Trump offered up a bleak assessment of the U.S. economy but added that, in terms of fixing it, it’s a task he’d rather skip. ‘We’re in a bubble,’ he said. ‘And, frankly, if there’s going to be a bubble popping, I hope they pop before I become president because I don’t want to inherit all this stuff. I’d rather it be the day before rather than the day after, I will tell you that.’ (Stewart)
So, much like he likes his women, Trump would like the nation to put its best outfit on, shut her mouth about all her problems, and simply cost on his credit. Boom and bust is the very matrix of unlimited expansion capitalism, and it is only the billionaires who do not burst with the economy they extort.
If Trump were to apply this logic to other areas of governance we could expect the nation to come to resemble the stark contrast of the super wealthy and the hope you can manage, well not really. Terrifyingly, Trump tweeted,
“The concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive” (Twitter).
Trump has promised if elected to reform the tax code (how and to what effect he is silent), repeal Obamacare, end NAFTA, impose high import tariffs, not touch Medicare and Social Security, and get rid of immigrants (Stewart). Those who have a history in politics, unlike Trump, understand that every policy change has unintended consequences, and a good way to negotiate them is with a compassionate approach to all the shareholders
Compassion is the last thing Trump as President would offer, and the challenges of sustainability and climate change are gravely at stake.
- Flegenheimer, Matt, and Maggie Maberman. “Donald Trump, Abortion Foe, Eyes ‘Punishment’ for Women, then recants.” The New York Times. 30 Mar. 2016. Web.
- Graham, David A. “Why Trump Might Regret playing ‘The Woman Card’ Against Clinton.” The Atlantic. 27 Apr. 2016. Web.
- Flores, Renna. “New York Times delves into Donald Trump’s history with women.” CBS. 14 May 2016. Web.
Bradner, Eric. “Donald trump stumbles on David Duke, KKK.” CNN, 29 Feb. 2016. Web.
Donald J. Trump for President, Inc. “Immigration reform that will make American great again.” Web.
Flegenheimer, Matt, and Maggie Maberman. “Donald Trump, Abortion Foe, Eyes ‘Punishment’ for Women, then recants.” The New York Times. 30 Mar. 2016. Web.
Flores, Renna. “New York Times delves into Donald Trump’s history with women.” CBS. 14 May 2016. Web.
Itkowitz, Colby. “‘Little Marco,’ ‘Lyin’ Ted,’ ‘Crooked Hillary:’ How Donald Trump makes name calling stick.” The Washington Post, 20 Apr. 2016. Web.
Stewart, Emily. “If Donald Trump Was President, Here’s What Would Happen to the U.S. Economy.” The Street, 4 May 2016. Web.
Trump, Donald. (@realDonaldTrump). Twitter. 11:15 AM- 6 Nov. 2012. [Tweet].
Woodward, Bob, and Robert Costa. “Trump reveals how he would force Mexico to pay for border wall.” The Washington Post. 5 April 2016. Web.