As the entire world is trying to understand what happened in American last week, a few post-hoc theories have been sprouting up all over the place.
Ideas such as:
Trump tapped into the sexism and racism of America
The world is becoming more populist in general
This is an election of change and Hillary is too much of an insider
Many blue collar white Americans feel left behind economically and want something new
The FBI hung Hillary out to try
The DNC didn’t respond to the Bernie movement the right way
Obviously I do not know the answer to this stuff, as stated earlier I do not understand anything about this country called America anymore, but I bet it is some amalgam of all those things.
But I want to offer one other possible contributor to ‘The Rise of Trump’:
Look at the electoral map; it looks like a raw hamburger with a blue bun on the left and right side. So right there we can see there is a big difference between the coasts and the middle of America.
So let’s look a bit deeper now; closer at the Democratic party. Who are the heavy hitters in this party?
Hillary Clinton; New York senator
Tim Kaine; Virginia senator
Bernie Sanders; Vermont senator
Elizabeth Warren; Massachusetts senator
Barack Obama; Illinois senator (but from Columbia/Harvard Law)
John Kerry; ex-Massachusetts senator
Joe Biden; Delaware senator
See a trend? All the DNC representation comes from the East Coast. Other than Nancy Pelosi (CA) and Harry Reid (NV, but retiring), every single big name in the Democratic party is really a party of East Coast elites.
So you don’t think there is East Coast bias in the Democratic Party? Well……..
Let’s look at MSNBC; the beacon of liberal ideas on cable TV. I see every voting demographic covered on this network with regular pundits that appear every day on their various shows. Races? Black, white, Hispanic, Asian….covered. Genders? Both men and women aplenty. Religion? Muslim, Jewish, Christian. Ages? Mostly middle-aged, but some young and some old as well.
But geography? None. Not one regular contributor represents any other area of America but the east coast. OK, I have seen Ronald Reagan JR on (Seattle) and some from LA/SF, but it is safe to say 90%+ are tied to NYC, Boston, Philly, or DC. The only two people I have ever seen on MSNBC that are a voice for ‘Lunchpail Larry’ are the guy who wrote ‘Hillbilly Elegy’ and Michael Moore; one is promoting a book and is on maybe once a month and the other is promoting a movie and is on about the same.
I feel this media bias is a real problem. Obviously I see it in sports far more often, but I really believe it is bleeding into politics; to the point where many groups in America feel ignored and alienated.
Have you ever felt ignored? It sucks. I have felt that most of my life; from social slights to living a great deal of time in a city that 80% of New Yorkers can’t point out on a map. Being ignored feels like you are outside a party where everyone is having a great time and all you are allowed to do is look through the window at all the fun everyone else is having.
I have heard somne news agencies identify this as another possible cause for ‘The Rise of Trump’, so I am not the only one musing about this. The question is this: will any network do annything about this and try to represent not just racial, gender, religious, cultural diversity, but also geographic diversity?
Chris Matthews said this: ‘If I were elected president, the first thing I would do is build a railroad that spans from DC to LA. I would put one of those really fast trains on it like they have in Tokyo, make it real nice. So when people travel coast to coast, they realize there actually is a Cleveland, St Louis, Topeka, etc. instead of flying over those cities all the time’.
I don’t know if Chris was serious or even if knows geography that well (doesn’t seem like he does), but I think the sentiment is 100% in the right place.
So media…..are you going to just talk about this or do something about it?
I am not holding my breath. But what do I know? I barely know anything about this country anymore.