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Nov 06, 2016

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Phoenix Woman

Thank you for this.

Too many white commentators, left as well as right, underestimate the depth to which this society is steeped in racism. Because of this, they underestimate the power of carefully crafted racial appeals like the Southern Strategy to win over white audiences and keep them won. Race, creed, and culture trump economic appeals with all too many whites.

The facts are these:

1. Racism hasn't really budged in the fifty years since LBJ signed the CRA and VRA. Millenials are just as likely to be as racist as their parents: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2015/04/07/white-millennials-are-just-about-as-racist-as-their-parents/

2. Trump supporters - meaning those who backed him in the primaries - are not all poor or working class. Their median household income is $72,000, which is $10,000 more than that of other non-Hispanic whites. They are in it for the race paranoia: They think of white privilege as a zero-sum game which they don't want to lose: http://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2016/10/15/13286498/donald-trump-voters-race-economic-anxiety

There will be more acts of right-wing white-panic violence in the next decade. I sincerely hope that Hillary has good Secret Service agents surrounding her. But as America gets more diverse, the incentive for unscrupulous politicians to milk these fears for political gain will weaken. When Texas finally turns blue, it will be Game Over for this as far as Congress is concerned.

It will take longer to subside at the state levels - for example, Iowa is going to be prone for decades to white-panic appeals, despite unemployment levels of barely 4%, because it is still less diverse than most other places in the US - but it will eventually subside.

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    Sorensen, editor and proprietor of Bluestem Prairie, serves clients in the business and nonprofit sectors. While progressive in outlook, she does not caucus with any political party.

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