Why My East Texas Neighbors are Voting for Trump

AP Photo/Evan Vucci

Trump promises a world where the happily stupid, bless their little hearts, can thrive within their own fear-based myths

Texas Observer

"Thing is, the support of Trump in Texas — and I speak specifically of my region, East Texas — goes beyond the smart and the not so smart, the educated and the uneducated. It is more a result of what I like to call the happily stupid; the ones who hold stupid views by choice, not due to lack of intelligence, but due to a kind of tribalism. Facts that interfere with their version of the world are there to be ignored. It’s like putting a hat on a pig and insisting the porker is your Uncle Frank, contrary to all other evidence."

Voting for Trump is about being part of a large reality show. Really.

The general view of the non-Trump supporter is that those who have chosen to vote for him are rednecks with 12 teeth, six of them in their coat pocket, and it’s possible those teeth might be on loan from someone else. The majority of these Trump supporters are listed primarily as White Uneducated Voters, which is code for “stupid redneck.” The kind of folks who kept their first grade report card because they’re proud of the D they made in conduct. (I made a C.)

However, I know a large number of people who make good money, are well-educated, appear to have a dental plan, and yet, they too are voting for Trump. To me this is as baffling as trigonometry, which until recently I thought had to do with Roy Rogers’ horse.

Thing is, the support of Trump in Texas — and I speak specifically of my region, East Texas — goes beyond the smart and the not so smart, the educated and the uneducated. It is more a result of what I like to call the happily stupid; the ones who hold stupid views by choice, not due to lack of intelligence, but due to a kind of tribalism. Facts that interfere with their version of the world are there to be ignored. It’s like putting a hat on a pig and insisting the porker is your Uncle Frank, contrary to all other evidence.

Trump has provided a dark, dank hole into which these folks can dump whatever it is they’re mad about. Even contradictory views, since Trump frequently changes viewpoint in midsentence, can happily nest there, swelling and breeding like poison fungus.

Most of what Trump is selling shouldn’t convince a distracted 12-year-old, and certainly it’s hard to see how a conniving real estate tycoon represents the average person, but those are the people he has made the greatest inroads with. It certainly isn’t due to his sterling personality. He always seems like the mean little boy whose last fun moment was beating his pet hamster to death with a chair leg.

He has said horrible things about women, people who are overweight (no mirrors at his house?), folks with disabilities, LGBT folks, POWs, Hispanics, African Americans, and the Muslim parents of a decorated soldier who died in defense of his country. He may as well have insulted ice cream and apple pie. He is a tax dodger, and has somehow tried to spin his financial losses and abuse of the system into proof that he’s a genius because he knows how to game the system. He has a false charity, a false university, and, due to his concern about the size of his sex organ, may well be filling his pants with a stuffed sock. ...
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