Being too politically correct has earned the left the title “snowflake” by supporters of Donald Trump. Their premise is that liberals are too sensitive because everything offends them. However, a recent Yale study suggests conservatives often basing their primary political views in fear. This has been confirmed in numerous studies, one even finding that conservatives have larger amygdala than liberals, which is the fear center of the brain.
The Yale study found that when conservatives were granted a wish by an imaginary genie and chose a suit of invincibility, many of them would turn full liberal in subsequent political questions. The conclusion was clear: remove fear, and you can win over people who believe they are conservatives to liberal views.
Donald Trump Has One Card: Playing to Fear
In real life, there are no invincibility suits. It’s therefore easy for politicians to stoke fear to earn votes. They’ve been doing this for years. Indeed, that was Hitler’s most potent tactic in gaining political power. One of the most disturbing elements of Donald Trump’s campaign was the use of these very tactics. His voters have been courted using the fear of Mexicans, the gays, Muslims, Black Lives Matter and whatever other boogeyman group they can paint as threatening to “our way of life.” Indeed, ‘Make America Great Again’ is no doubt just another way of saying “make it like it was before these groups had voices in the community,” because they scare me.
Trump will continue playing this card. He’s currently provoking a war with North Korea, because fear of a nuclear strike by NK is just the ticket he needs to keep fear at the forefront. The irony is that he is potentially creating the danger.
The truth is that the left isn’t too “sensitive” at all. Standing up courageously for the dignity of other people is the opposite of fear. You might call it decency. Are there those who are way over the top with some of that triggering stuff? Sure, of course there are. But when liberals speak out against calling Muslims evil, that isn’t oversensitivity. Neither is objecting to Mexicans being first and foremost labeled criminals and rapists out of the gate by a presidential candidate (who somehow managed to get elected).
I’m not interested in starting a campaign to call conservatives snowflakes. My purpose is to offer a counter perspective on this trope. The truth is that Trump supporters are sensitive human beings. Perhaps liberals should try to understand they are experiencing a threat, real or perceived. They are reacting as humans naturally do.
Learn from Franklin Roosevelt
FDR’s inaugural address proclaimed “there is nothing to fear but fear itself.” This was his message in face of the Great Depression. It must be the message once again in the face of present catastrophe.
The answer to this fear problem is in establishing a message of safety. The last thing we want to do is intentionally play to fears like Trump obviously did. Rather, let’s correct misconceptions that may be the source of fear, and stand up bravely against real threats. This is far more important than having policy arguments based on facts and figures. Easier said than done, with all the outrageous fear-mongering propaganda websites, radio and television out there. But that’s why we need leadership in the community and Democratic Party who understand this, and can fight back.
To the media and all decent people… stop talking about Trump’s shenanigans, and start talking to the American people about their security and safety.
Make America Brave Again
Americans need someone who can wrap their arms around them and tell them everything is going to be okay. The next Democratic presidential nominee must be someone who can accomplish that (cough cough Joe Biden).