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When I Said All Trump Supporters Are White Supremacists, I Meant It

flickr/Gage Skidmore

Yes. All of them.

A few days ago I caused a stir in my own tiny corner of the internet world by saying what I thought everybody already knew: If you support Trump, you are a White Supremacist.

When people talked about Hillary going too far when she said half of Trump’s supporters can be put into a “basket of deplorables,” I was left scratching my head and thinking: Only 50%?

If you support Trump, you are a White Supremacist. Full stop. Not just the passive amount of White Supremacy that we all end up participating in, in an inherently White Supremacist system — you are an active, hateful, dangerous White Supremacist.

Now some of you may be asking, as you have on Facebook and Twitter: “Ijeoma, are you really willing to call half of the U.S. population White Supremacists?” And to that my answer is hell yes. This may seem like a bold statement to some, but honestly, I can’t see why.

Human beings can quite easily fall in line with violent hatred and oppression; any quick glance through world history will show that to be true. Do you think that the Nazis came to power against the will of the German electorate, or with the support of the German people? Do you think that slavery was upheld purely by the few rich enough to own slaves, or by an entire society that even erected armies to defend it? And no, none of this can be excused away as “a product of the times” — humans are not like wine grapes; we do not have a few “bad years” that we can blame on the soil. If you recognize that these horrific systems of abuse, oppression, and even genocide were upheld by everyday people, then you have to acknowledge that everyday people are capable of some pretty heinous shit. You can be in the PTA and you can pay your taxes and you can volunteer at your local homeless shelter and at the same time you can be actively upholding the oppression of others. It has been done before and it is being done now.

Human beings can quite easily fall in line with violent hatred and oppression. Click To Tweet

So yes, half of the U.S. population can be actively working to uphold violent White Supremacy, and yes, Trump’s campaign is violently White Supremacist. Your grandma who supports Trump is a White Supremacist. Your buddy who supports Trump is a White Supremacist. That’s what happens when you actively support White Supremacy. Here’s a sample of what is a vibrant buffet of White Supremacy that Trump supporters are backing:

Make America Great Again is a call to White Supremacy: When was America greater than it is now? The ‘60s? The ‘50s? The ‘40s? How you answer that question depends on how white you are. I’m only half-white, so if I go back to any time before 1967, my very existence would have been illegal in many states. Hell, two decades after I was born, anti-miscegenation language was finally removed from the Alabama state constitution, so for me — I have between 2000 and now to draw from. Every period of time in U.S. history prior to this one was less safe and less free for people of color, so if you plan on “Making America Great Again” and you are referencing any time in the past — you’re asking for a return of White Supremacy.

Trump’s anti-immigration rhetoric is racist as fuck: I’m not saying that if you believe in tighter immigration rules you are immediately a White Supremacist (although you might just be), but if you go about it by insinuating that the Mexicans crossing the border are rapists, and if your proxies are warning of “taco trucks on every corner,” then you are trying to tap into a White Supremacist narrative of the black and brown brute and you are sure as hell dogwhistling that white culture in America is at risk.

Trump’s Islamophobic rhetoric is racist as fuck: Now, before you barge in letting me know that “Islam isn’t a race,” let me please remind you to sit the fuck down. Islam isn’t a race, but Trump’s Islamophobia sure as hell is racist. If Trump and his followers didn’t think of SCARY BROWN PEOPLE when they thought of Islam, Islamophobia wouldn’t exist. If Islamophobia wasn’t racist in nature, we’d treat all problems within other religious communities not affiliated with scary brown people the same way we treat Islam. If Islamophobia wasn’t racist, we’d be trying to “liberate” Mormon women currently being punished for their own rapes at BYU. If Islamophobia wasn’t racist, we wouldn’t have conservative politicians fighting against raising the statute of limitations on child sex abuse so that Catholic priests could finally face justice for their crimes. If Islamophobia wasn’t racist, we would have declared war on “Christian Fundamentalism” after the Oklahoma City bombing and the multiple deadly Planned Parenthood bomb and gun attacks over the years. If Islamophobia wasn’t racist, Trump would be seeking immigration bans on people from ALL countries that produce terrorists (which is basically every country), not just brown ones. But because Islamophobia IS racist, Trump has been able to stir up White Supremacist hatred and fear of the brown “other” and turn it into votes.

This is just a sample of the White Supremacy that has seeped into every corner of the Trump campaign. It’s not everything, but it’s enough. It’s enough to overshadow any possible positive you could entertain in supporting his run for presidency.

There is no compromise between equality and violent White Supremacy. Click To Tweet

So if you support Trump, you are supporting all of the above, and you are supporting White Supremacy. If you support Trump for other reasons, you are STILL supporting all of the above, and you are supporting White Supremacy. If you believe that you are actively against White Supremacy and yet you will support Trump, you are lying to yourself. People are being hurt right now by the racism that Trump is peddling, by the bravado that the legitimization of this election is giving to White Supremacists. What in the world could Trump possibly be offering you that would cause you to overlook all of the above?

And I’m not saying you have to vote for Hillary to not be a White Supremacist. I’m not saying that there aren’t some Hillary supporters who are white supremacists (see: everything I’ve ever written about this election for more). You CAN be a Hillary supporter, a Jill Stein supporter, a Gary Johnson supporter, or a die-hard anarchist and still be a White Supremacist. But if you are a Trump supporter, you ARE a White Supremacist (and yes, all 15 Trump supporters of color are perfectly capable of being White Supremacists, too). You looked at a campaign built on open, gleeful, hate-filled White Supremacy and you said, “sign me up!”

And I’m not willing to coddle you. I’m not willing to create a safe space for you to be able to elect White Supremacy into law without being called what you are: an unabashed, willful proponent of White Supremacy. There is no “middle ground” to be found here. There is no “compromise” between equality and violent White Supremacy. And there is no “gentler way” of confronting racism when my basic humanity as a woman of color is not enough to sway you against electing a regime that is built on the hatred and fear of people who look like me. And those of us directly harmed by the disgusting hate you want to elect into office will not forget that you traded away our safety and humanity for empty promises of “winning” and “greatness.” We see you for who you really are.