La Opinión (Editorial)
September 13, 2016
Saying that half of Republican candidate Donald Trump’s followers are a “basket of deplorables” is a mistake because it is a generalization, as Hillary Clinton – who uttered the phrase – has admitted herself.
However, the Democratic candidate’s expression is not wrong in referring to the fact that the millionaire’s message has brought a series of political undesirables out of the fringe to give them a privileged position in this presidential election.
Surely, the percentage mentioned by Clinton is an exaggeration, but the prominence of an individual such as Steve Bannon – Trump’s current campaign chief – in the mogul’s operation cannot be overlooked. Brannon’s selection was welcomed by extremist leaders in racist and anti-Semitic organizations across the U.S., who applauded the inclusion of one of them in such an important position.
Bannon is chair of Breitbart News, a website that – thanks to its conspiracy theories and anti-black and anti-immigrant content, especially against Latinos – has become a meeting point for right-wing extremists, now known as alt-Right. A few days ago, the leaders of this movement gathered near the White House at a conference in which the idea of white supremacy and antisemitism prevailed.
The tone of Trump’s message and his tendency to characterize expressions of intolerance as an abuse of “political correctness” allowed well-known racists like former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke to celebrate the New York-born candidate’s presence in the race as it represented his point of view. Trump’s campaign has distanced itself from Duke but, seeking to avoid offending those who disagree with him, has been incapable to condemn the overt racism this man embodies.
There is a large number of Trump followers worried about the economy who identify with the nationalistic rhetoric of the millionaire. They are not necessarily the “racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic and Islamophobic” people the Democrat listed, but there is no doubt that they are among them. That is where Hillary Clinton is right.
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