How Birther Mania Paved The Way
If you are watching the chaos in the White House unfold and wondering, How does anyone still support this guy? then let me back up to 2008.
You see…as soon as it looked like Barack Obama was going to get the Democratic nomination for candidacy, the right started the talk of missing birth certificates and secret Islam beliefs. And while people like me were able to roll our eyes and ignore all of that rhetoric, it was being discussed in Conservative circles for YEARS. I mean, in 2011 he had to show his “long form” birth certificate because the Birther Mania still had traction in many circles and he knew he was running for re-election. And in 2012 there were still 17% of Americans who thought he was a Muslim.
My point is, there have been serious fears on the Conservative side of politics about Barack Obama that turned out to be unfounded and that caused our country no harm in the long run. But these fears were VERY REAL. I know people personally who still believe Barack Obama is a secret Muslim and his plan to dedicate our country to the pursuits of Islam were simply thwarted. In some circles, this is where the “Attack On Christianity” rhetoric was born, by looking at any plan to curb Christian legislation as a way to pave the way for our secret Muslim president to force us all to practice Islam.
These fears were very real and – in the eyes of those who lived them – backed up by many trustworthy sources. An any sources that say otherwise were being controlled by supporters of the President. (Kinda like how people on my side of politics don’t trust Fox news since Trump openly supports them so much.)
Now…fast forward to present day and the fears many of us have of the Trump White House. Well, Trump supporters can brush every bit of it off and say, “Well, we’ve been there, and you all didn’t listen to us and our fears didn’t pan out so we’re not going to listen to you and your fears will fizzle into nothing like ours did.”
Their news sources which they trust are telling them we’re all just making mountains out of molehills and looking for drama to undermine the Executive Branch. And they can dismiss us because they know how scared they were, and none of their fears manifested into anything, so why would ours?
So while many respected sources are concerned, the average Trump supporter can look back when their trusted sources were concerned, and can see that nothing came of those fears and they can dismiss ours. When we question their support they simply respond by saying that they questioned our support of a President that was so obviously a secret Muslim trying to destroy Christianity in our nation. And some of them may not even be that extreme, but they did have some major concerns during Obama’s Presidency and nothing terrible happened so they really don’t feel the need to give our concerns any attention.
I’m not saying it’s right, I’m just saying that I see a lot of people on my side of politics just in awe over the fact that Trump still has supporters at all, and I want to remind them that none of us changed our support of Obama because of their fears. And while you and I will agree that our fears definitely have more evidentiary support, they truly believed theirs did as well.
These are tough times, but 8 years ago the other side was just as scared. Obviously I believe their fears were unfounded and their sources were invalid, but it doesn’t change the fear itself. And they see that their fears never manifested into anything terrible for our country…so why would ours?
There’s not real point to this other than to try to shed light on the “other side” from someone who comes is surrounded by Trump supporters. They remember how we laughed at their fears, so why would they open their minds to ours?