The next step
After Donald Trump’s victory a week ago, many of my liberal friends have been wondering what they should do next. Some have participated in protests and donated to advocacy groups. Others have become activists and begun to lay the groundwork for opposing Trump’s policies. After a lot of thought, I’ve decided what I’m going to do next.
I’m going to go to rural Pennsylvania and conduct 1-on-1 interviews with white, working class men and women. I will specifically seek out people who voted for Trump. I will come from a prospective of empathy and understanding. I will not come from a prospective of shame and anger.
I’ve decided that this is my next step for the following reasons:
I’ve lived the bulk of my life on the east and west coasts. I’ve lived in or near big cities during that time. For the most part, my friends share the same education level, political views, and interests as I do. Out of my entire social circle, I don’t know a single Trump voter. This is embarassing and sad. I am in a bubble and I need to get outside of it.
For all the effort that I and my friends have spent on diversity around race or gender, we’ve come up well short on addressing diversity around opinion. This leads to group think and I need to stop engaging in it.
The Democratic party is no longer a big tent party. It kicked out white, blue collar voters over the past decade. Our tent actually shrunk. In order for it to win elections, it must understand these voters and I hope this interview series can help with that.