If you are of the left, bear with me for just a minute. I know you won’t agree, but see this from my perspective for a minute.
Conservatives, myself included, believe President Obama often divided up Americans to advance his agenda. He played rich vs. poor. He played black vs. white. He played urban vs. rural. In his unguarded moments he referred to certain voters as people bitterly clinging to guns and religion. He told Hispanic voters that Republicans were the enemy. He urged voters to get in their neighbors’ faces.
Barack Obama himself, in his last State of the Union address, acknowledged that he had contributed to the divisiveness in the country through his rhetoric. Let’s not forget him referring to Republicans as hostage takers, etc.
Even now, Democrats genuinely believe, or claim to, that Republicans want to kill the elderly and poor.
You on the left can take issue with this. You probably see it differently than conservatives do. You may actually agree with Barack Obama. But now look at Trump and recoil with horror.
Republicans saw Barack Obama dividing up the nation for political gain and now they have embraced a President who is doing the same, but escalated. The President and Steve Bannon seem to really believe that if they drive up angst among blue collar white voters they will be helped. They, and I, believe Barack Obama did the same to black and Hispanic voters. Heck, Joe Biden said the GOP wanted to put black people back in chains.
So President Trump, from the Republican perspective, is just using Barack Obama’s playbook with some steroids.
I had a problem with Barack Obama doing it and I have a problem with Donald Trump doing it. Dividing Americans to advance an agenda does long term damage. You can disagree, but I think Barack Obama did it and Trump is doing it. What the GOP does not seem to realize that is the next Democrat President will do it too. And just as Trump used Obama’s divisions and amped them up, the next Democrat will use Trump’s and amp them up further.
We are in a process of escalation and what we are escalating is division. Unless we are willing to allow people to be themselves, leave them alone, etc. it will only get worse. But it is going to get worse because at this point neither side can help themselves.
The left genuinely believes Christians must be punished if they refuse to provide goods and services to a gay wedding. Never mind that the freedom to exercise religion is explicitly in the constitution and gay marriage is only read into the constitution. That grievance keeps many evangelicals siding with Trump because of the existential crisis created by leftwing antagonists.
Meanwhile, black voters see President Trump making kissy face with white nationalists and it creates, in their mind, an existential crisis that keeps them siding with Democrats. Both sides escalate the division to lock down support even further.
This does not end well for any of us.