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‘Identity Politics,’ Not Trump Voters, Will Save Democrats

Issac J. Bailey   

I know lots of Trump supporters. Democrats aren’t going to get them to switch sides by downplaying racism.

I could see a man like Donald Trump coming in November 2008. At the time, I was the lead columnist for the Sun News newspaper in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. A regular reader of mine left a frantic message claiming president elect Barack Obama would make white people slaves as payback for all that white people had done to black people.

I didn’t know it would be Trump in particular, but I knew someone like him was on the horizon unless serious people began taking seriously the predictable anxiety accompanying our nation’s transformation into majority-minority status. Serious people—friends, associates and colleagues, including an editor who told me race no longer mattered after the 9/11 attacks—instead kept telling people like me to stop “injecting” race into everything, to leave the past in the past, to embrace what was about to become a post-racial world. That reader of mine showed otherwise.

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