Where do we go from here?
I didn’t see much prescient-ness there, “rural voters attracted to his lack of political correctness”, who didn’t know that? The maps don’t impress me either, most of that red is fields and rocks and otherwise uninhabited. Rural America does not have some insight into how corrupt our political system. Pretty sure it was liberals in cities that first pointed that out.
I think that’s missing the point.
In Hillsboro, Abernathy and I chatted in his office. We agreed that it was the cultural divide, not economics, which primarily created the Trump phenomenon. It’s not that people in Highland County are actually affected by immigration, or terrorism (when was the last attack on U.S. soil in a small town?), or even political correctness run amok. But they voted for Trump largely because of those subjects, and the fears and resentments they engendered.
I BELIEVE THAT A LARGE SWATH OF THE WHITE POPULATION IN HILLSBORO (AND THOUSANDS OF PLACES LIKE IT AROUND THE COUNTRY) SIMPLY BELIEVE THAT AMERICA IS NO LONGER A PLACE THEY RECOGNIZE. AND THEY DON’T LIKE IT.
Many of these people are filled with an underlying fear and resentment of how America has changed, and will continue to evolve in the future. Or perhaps they have nostalgia for the days when America was whiter and straighter, where women knew their place, and where football players didn’t celebrate touchdowns by pounding their chests.
In either case, a huge number of rural whites see the Democratic Party as the embodiment of this “different” country.