I get it. You're really really angry. The white working class is having a hard time. The white middle class is contracting. The white working poor are slipping even further into crushing poverty. We know this because rates of suicide, drug addiction and alcoholism are up all over the country in white communities. And contrary to the popular myth, unemployment, alcoholism, and drug abuse are not the result of "moral failings."
You guys are getting your asses kicked by an economy that doesn't work for you anymore and you're in pain. It must be even more frustrating because it's the economy you wanted.
Stop. Furiously denying it won't change anything. This is a Republican economy full of Republican "free markets", Republican deregulation, Republican tax cuts and you voted for Republicans. The 1% has more money than 90% of the country. Just 8 people, 6 of them from the United States, control as much wealth as half of the entire population of the planet. You'd have to work a month to earn what a CEO makes in an hour. And that's if you even have a job that pays more than minimum wage. Does any of that sound like the "Socialist/Communist/Marxist" economy you've been told liberals want?
This is a Republican economy and it's what you voted for.
This will not be something that you want to hear but it's true. It's also true that Republicans have zero interest in the job creation you crave because they do not care about you. You hear a lot about how liberal government regulations kill jobs but no one can ever quite seem to explain to you how allowing Wall Street to recklessly gamble with your bank deposits will lower unemployment. We all know how easily that gambling destroys your job, life savings, and your future but when was the last time a booming stock market created a single job opening in your town?
Wall Street doesn't care about giving back to your community. Why are you so eager to have Republicans repeal regulations that are keeping the banks from fucking you like they did in '08? This is what you voted for so who's fault will it be when they crash the economy again?
The decline of coal jobs is a little different but that's also not our fault. It's not your fault for voting Republican, either, in case you were wondering. It's not even the fault of coal companies, environmentalists or the Chinese. Sometimes technology just kills jobs and even as a pro-labor liberal, I can't say, "Don't use machines that can do the job of 1000 men!" It sucks, but it happens.
What is your fault is what came after. We could easily spend a teeny tiny fraction of the budget to retrain coal mining country (and the entire rust belt). Every out of work coal miner can be taught to professionally install solar panels or any of 1000 or more other good paying jobs, so why aren't we doing that? Again, because the Republicans you keep voting for refuse to help you. As far as they're concerned, coal miners are good for photo ops and talking points and that's it. Jesus Christ, they even tried to cut healthcare for miners suffering from Black Lung! Do you honestly think they're going to fix your local economies?
I could go on like this for a while but you get the idea.
At some point, you have to ask yourself: What is more important to me? Do I want my kids to have healthcare, a paying job and a future? Or is it more important to punish gays for having anal sex? Do I want to be able to retire someday or do I want to keep working until the day I die because I oppose birth control? Do I want to a job that pays a living wage with benefits or will I keep working part time for peanuts because I don't like immigrants?
You tell us that you vote Republican because they will "make America great again" but all they're proposing is more of the exact same economic policies that made you so angry in the first place. More tax cuts for the insanely rich. Less regulations for the banks. Less benefits for you that you've paid for your entire working life. What the hell are you doing?
You've been steadily losing the culture wars for decades but it was only when the economy really abandoned you that you started to drink and take drugs and commit suicide in record numbers. This tells me that while, yes, you flipped out over marriage equality and the black man in the White House, the destruction of your economic future hit you in a much more personal way that you didn't understand how to articulate other than self-destruction.
It doesn't have to be that way. You may reflexively hate the Democratic Party because they're godless liberal commies but listen to what they want: Opportunity for our kids. Good paying jobs for us. The ability to retire with dignity. Sound familiar? It's what Trump promised but cannot deliver because Republicans will never give him the chance. I'll bet you money that if a Democratic majority handed Trump a bill to rebuild roads and bridges in your city and create hundreds of jobs in the process, he'd sign it in a heartbeat. You will never get that from Republicans. Ever. Republicans don't do infrastructure anymore.
Yes, Democrats want equality for minorities and the LGBT community, too, but if you live in the Midwest, why do care? It hardly affects you. A gay couple getting married down the street may make you feel threatened but they're not going to foreclose on your house or take away your Social Security. On the other hand, we've already seen firsthand where Republican economics leads us and if you didn't lose your home, you probably know someone who did. What is going to hurt you more, bankruptcy or two men kissing?
You have a choice: Allow your distaste for Those People to override your economic self-interest or stop voting for the party that has spent decades stripping you of your future. Even if Republicans banned gay marriage, abortion, and immigrants tomorrow, they still wouldn't lift a single finger to create jobs for you because they do not care about you. They'd just find something new for you to be afraid of and demand you vote for their massive 1% tax cuts so they can fight whatever tomorrow's scary new threat is.
You're hurting and all the drugs and alcohol in the world won't make that pain go away until you make the Republican economic agenda that's killing you go away.
There are 469 days left to the 2018 elections.
- This article kills fascists
Please consider becoming a paid member of The Daily Banter and supporting us in holding the Trump administration to account. Your help is needed more than ever, and is greatly appreciated.