Donald Trump wants the Black vote. Okay, that’s not true. He doesn’t want the Black vote, but he has to say he wants the Black vote despite doing nothing to get it.
“What do you have to lose? You’re living in poverty. Your schools are no good. You have no jobs. Fifty-eight percent of your youth is unemployed. What the hell do you have to lose? I will produce. I will produce the inner cities and I will produce for the African Americans. And the Democrats will not produce. All they’ve done is taken advantage of your vote. … If you keep voting for the same people, you’ll get exactly the same result.”
This is like a bear telling you its better if you let him eat you instead of being devoured by piranhas because it’ll go quicker. Trump next made a bold prediction what happens if he wins and runs for reelection in 2020.
“I guarantee you that I will get over 95 percent of the African-American vote. I promise you. Because I will produce.”
Let’s unpack that last part first. Donald Trump will NEVER get over 95 percent of the Black vote. Right now, he’s struggling to get to five percent. Hillary Clinton is killing Trump so bad with Black voters that he’s drawing historically low numbers. How low can Trump go? Lower than the percentage of votes Barry Goldwater and George Wallace got from Blacks.
Secondly, Donald Trump is not going to Black voters seeking their support. His “what the hell have you got to lose?” remarks were made in Dimondale, Michigan, a city that is less than 1 percent Black. Trump has declined invitations to speak to the NAACP convention in Cincinnati and the joint convention of the National Association of Black Journalists and National Association of Hispanic Journalists in Washington.
Trump didn’t even send his national director of African-America outreach, Omarosa Manigault to pinch hit for him. Actually there is no African-American outreach by Trump and there never was. It’s an outreach to White Americans in hopes of convincing them they aren’t voting for an insane racist (hint: they are) .
This is obvious to Michael Steele, the former chairman of the Republican National Committee, who told The Wall Street Journal he has passed along requests from historically black colleges for Mr. Trump to speak….“You don’t go to a white community to talk about black folks. Hello, it doesn’t make sense.”
Actually, it makes a lot of sense if the audience you’re trying to reach with your open invitation isn’t the one you’re really interested in.
This is obvious to Jamelle Boulle of Slate.
Trump needs to do something, and nonwhite voters are already too far gone for the real estate mogul to make up lost ground. (Trump is on pace to lose black voters by the largest margin in modern American history, surpassing even Barry Goldwater’s catastrophic performance in the 1964 presidential election.) Enter Kellyanne Conway, part of the latest round of political operatives to hitch their fate to Trump’s aspirations. Last week, Conway—who backed Texas Sen. Ted Cruz in the Republican primaries—supplanted Paul Manafort as manager for the Trump campaign. And in short order, she has worked to tame the worst of Trump’s behavior.
The goal is straightforward: If Trump seems more normal and less erratic, then he could begin to win those white college-educated voters who are critical to victory in states like Colorado, Florida, North Carolina, and Pennsylvania. For Team Trump, it’s a simple equation. If those voters are turned off by his racist rhetoric, then he could address their fears by loudly reaching out to black voters. It’s an old strategy, meant to assure a critical set of Republican-leaning voters that they aren’t backing a bigot.
Conway herself gave away the game in a Sunday interview with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos. “I live in a white community. I’m white. I was very moved by his comment,” said Conway, when asked about the all-white venue for Trump’s comments and the extent to which they sustain the idea that most black Americans live in poverty. Likewise, on Monday, Republican National Committee spokesperson Sean Spicer pointed to Trump’s belated adherence to anti-discrimination laws as evidence of black outreach, something that wouldn’t win a single black voter to Trump’s side, but might assuage some white ones.
The Great White Father of the unwashed Black masses is continuing his soul serenade as he speaks to overwhelmingly White audiences about the Negro Problem.
“Poverty. Rejection. Horrible education. No housing. No homes. No ownership. Crime at levels nobody has seen. You can go to war zones in countries that we’re fighting and it’s safer than living in some of our inner cities. They’re run by the Democrats.”
“Look, it is a disaster the way African Americans are living. We’ll get rid of the crime. You’ll be able to walk down the street without getting shot. Right now, you walk down the street, you get shot.”
He’s absolutely right. When I took the trash out, I had to duck and cover to avoid a couple of drug dealers shooting it out in the alley and on my way to work, I sped past a drive-by and a gang rape.
Trump paints a dire picture of what life is like for Black people, and he’s showing off his Art of the Unreal to enthusiastic audiences of Whites who eat up all this doom and gloom of violence, dysfunction, addition, poverty, unemployment and rampant crime. That’s not how most Black people live, but when the only Black folks you know are Omarosa, that’s the way Trump sees how they live.
What that means is obvious to New York Times columnist, Charles Blow.
“Donald Trump is a bigot, there’s no other way to get around it. Anybody who accepts that, supports it. Anybody supports it is promoting it and that makes you a part of the bigotry itself. You have to decide whether or not you want to be part of the bigotry that is Donald Trump. You have to decide whether you want to be part of the sexism and misogyny that is Donald Trump.”
And there you have it. Donald Trump isn’t appealing to Black voters. He doesn’t even talk to them and he knows he’s not getting their votes. When they aren’t being constantly shot at, Black voters know Trump’s history and they aren’t going to be suckered in by his sweet words that Daddy will make it all right.
Trump’s latest “pivot” (or is it “flailing?”), that all Black Americans are living in a dystopian war zone only HE can save them from is an insult to every sentient, conscious Black American and should be considered an insult by every sentient, conscious White American.
Trump is treading a familiar road. It’s a road where all the criminals are Black like George H.W. Bush’s Willie Horton and everyone on welfare and food stamps are Black like Ronald Reagan’s “welfare queens” and Blacks are a problem to be solved instead of citizens to be involved.
Playing upon stereotypes and racial fear and resentment is an old tactic, but a very successful one. Lee Atwater would smile with pride.