How to Convert a Trump Supporter
We're staring down the barrel of an interesting and terrifying new America, wrought with the kind of greed and cronyism that gives aging republicans their first non-chemically induced erections in decades. One of the most horrifying aspects of this recent vicissitude in American ideals is the complete and udder insistence from the people who still support Trump (about 36% of Americans) that he can do no evil. They seem to be completely impervious to facts. For example, if you tell them a real thing, like Trump is currently under investigation for money laundering, there's a high likelihood that they'll scream “Fake news!” and punch you with a fistful of Wal-Mart coupons. However, if you insist that universal health care is a ploy to make all of the ducks gay, the response may well be “Of course... Thanks a lot, Obama!” But have no fear. My long-shunned trailer park roots have bestowed me with a certain measure of insight that has sprouted the seedlings of a potentially effective 'Hearts and Minds' campaign to infiltrate this marauding camp of idiocy. The solution? Meet them where they are.
This idea is not a simple one. Then again, we're not exactly faced with a cunning enemy. The truth is that most Americans want the same things, we just piss on each other's boots about how to get there. We may all want an increase in economic opportunities, but the means of getting there are where we differ. While liberals believe that offering higher education to people who may have the desire, but lack the means, would be the effective basis of economic growth, a lot of conservatives are still duped by the persistently unproven idea of 'trickle down' economics, offering up their wrists and tax cuts to the already obscenely wealthy. Despite political rhetoric, both sides of the aisle want health, wealth, security, and freedom. They're just ideas that wear different lipstick, depending on who's house they're in.
Which brings us back to the original point of this rant: How do you find common ground with people who genuinely believe that government-funded child rape happened in the basement of a pizza shop with no basement, but don't bat an eye when the POTUS fires the guy who's investigating him? You court their viewpoints in a way that conflates your shared ideals.
We'll start with an easy one. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos has been lauded as a gross incompetent by both of the major parties in the US. Her desire to spend millions of tax payer dollars on vouchers for private schools, does nothing more than pull resources from public education, which is already critically underfunded. Combine that with the fact that this billionaire heiress had the audacity to say that teachers (who average about $46,000 a year to scold your little bastard for pulling the leg off of the class newt) were overpaid, and you have the boiling undercurrent of bipartisan unity. But the idea has to be built under the right frame. Instead of saying “Teachers, as well as education in general, are crucial in laying the foundation for the future of American society,” you should say something along the lines of “Them damn jihads don't believe in any type of book learnin'! I don't know about you, fella, but I ain't no mooslim!” This is sure to damn near knock the ugly ass MAGA hat right off of a Trumpeter's head. You've now managed to introduce a concise idea befitting the intellectual capacity of every trailer park in a 300 mile radius.
The next socialist jargon that you can use to spin some heads is a package deal. You can manage to argue for government assistance for the poor AND single payer health care, at the same time! All you have to say is “Here in America, we don't let no one die in the streets like them third-world shitholes over in... (literally name any country or region where the people are brown. Hell. You can say Agrabah, and they won't know that it's the fictional city in Alladin). This will help you frame the conversation in a way that plays to American exceptionalism, demonizes foreigners, and gets the Trump fan on board!
You may ask, “But what of the environment?” Even for a liberal Bernie-lover like me, the environment can be an insurmountably boring topic some of the time. There's a lot of dry scientific discovery on one side, and a mountain of annoying hippie bullshit on the other. And god forbid Willow gets a degree in yoga theory with a minor in environmental science! So, how do we get the mouth-breathers who would love to litter a NASCAR track with Chinese-made red hats after a good race, to give a shit about oil pipelines?Well, hunting is a good place to start. You can simply point out that it's hard to spot a buck that's covered in crude oil. Bring some pictures with you for this particular argument. That oughta do the trick.
At the end of the day, this presidency seems to be pretty bulletproof when it comes to corruption scandals and general embarrassment, so facts aren't going to work if you want to change any of the minds of the devout. We have to change our argument if we want to bring people back to a frame of mind that's even remotely logical. Honestly, the approach laid out here probably won't do anything in that respect either, but it'll be a lot more fun than arguing on a Facebook thread with other broke people about economic nuance.