Since 2015 we have seen American politics take a dark turn when a massive divide between Democrats and Republicans began to spread.

Story By Carla D. Espinoza


As the presidential race came down to Trump and Clinton, the scene became uglier. As accusations on both sides were thrown around, names were called, and when Hilary Clinton referred to Donald Trump Supporters as, “Deplorables” the divide only worsened. For the first time in a long time, the fight amongst elite politicians bled into American neighborhoods. Even relatives and friends decided to end relationships because of who they intended to vote for. After a strenuous and confusing election night, Donald Trump would come out as victor for the 2016 Presidential Election. The breakdown amongst American society continued. Some say Trump started the flame but did we continue to fuel the fire? 

President Donald Trump

President Donald Trump

Of course, we cannot ignore the Trump Administration’s unspeakable atrocities during his time in office. Trump’s immigration policy of separating families at the border has displaced hundreds of immigrant children, many of which have still not been reunited with their families. Enacting this policy is an unforgivable act. Many of those who oppose Trump have a strong opposition against his supporters as well. Most of those opposers see Trump’s immigration policy as a reason to accuse his voters of being heartless racists. Some Democrat voters have since appointed themselves to morality police’s role as “Cancel Culture” spread like wildfire on every social media platform. Even comments from years ago could cause someone to fall victim to the new trend. Celebrities were mostly a target. While it is obvious it’s not okay to say racist remarks or scream racial slurs at others in the supermarket; it is also wrong to exact revenge on those offenders. By doing so, we have removed all opportunities for conversation and possible growth. Both Republican and Democrat voters may be guilty of being blinded by their intense preferences.

            A Trump supporter who asked to remain anonymous offered their reasoning for voting Republican. And, what stood out to me the most was their distrust for the Republican Party itself, stating, “…Another reason why I like Trump is that he can’t be bought. The Republican Party can’t tell him what to do and what narrative to follow. The Republicans are just as bad as the Democrats in some aspect.” A quote often said by Trump’s supporters. To a group of people who feel slighted by the Elite politicians controlling the government, Trump may be a patriotism symbol. My anonymous source began our conversation stating how they do not always agree with everything the President has done during his term, and voting for Trump is a vote for “The lesser of two evils.” As for specific policies that influence their vote, they spoke about gun rights and the fear of the rise of socialism, saying, “I’m a huge gun enthusiast first of all. I feel the second amendment is trying to be abolished, and I feel that everyone should own a gun lawfully and not be infringed. I am anti-socialism second. I don’t believe socialism is the way to go, and I feel the Democratic Party is pushing for it.” When discussing Black Lives Matter and Police Brutality, their perspective was similar to most Democrats but worded differently. While they do still combat Black Lives Matter with “All Lives Matter,” they explained how Black lives are certainly included in that slogan. They added that police do need to improve on training, and there have been unnecessary deaths by police. But they did not mince words when it came to law enforcement support and they strongly believe not all cops are bad. Another subject they pointed to was their worry about misinformation through media outlets and blamed the media for making Donald Trump look racist. This subject is debatable, but it is clear that not every Trump supporter is a radical racist. We discussed border control, military funding, and their views were standard of most republicans; to them, it’s about security. On the same note, they did believe immigrants should have easier access to work visas and a more exact path to citizenship. As our interview came to a close, they made a point to say they love all of their fellow citizens, and for them, it is a matter of policy, and they don’t believe Democrats are going the right direction for progress. 

            Of course, we have radicalism on the left and right. But maybe we forgot most of us vote from a place of hope for a better future. There will always be a difference of opinion regarding politics, but as Americans, we can’t let those differences divide us. President George Washington warned us about the dangers of party alliance in his Farewell address in  1796, “…Serves always to distract the public councils and enfeeble the public administration. It agitates the community with ill-founded jealousies and false alarms, kindles the animosity of one part against another, foments occasionally riot and insurrection”.

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