In the past, you have tried to talk sense, but failed. How, then, can you address the disconnect between you and your Trump supporting friends?
If you are like me, you believe that, overall, your colleagues and close friends are thoughtful and intelligent—at least on whatever level led you to be close. You also believe that your friends would not intentionally subvert national interests.
And yet, there is the fact that a few friends and associates are Trump supporters. They may not agree that our activities damage the environment or that a woman has the right to make decisions concerning her body, as you do—but you give them credit for wanting a strong economy, disrupting terrorism, paying down the debt, and factoring fairness and equality into any legislation.
For example, in addition to my nephew, two close friends are firmly in the Trump camp. I like them; I respect them—and yet we are worlds apart on a matter of dire importance to life on this planet. For some reason, we just don’t see 1 plus 1 the same way. They see a dress that is blue and black, while you and I are certain that it is gold and white —»
You also want to believe that your friends understand and respect the reasons that we have checks and balances and that a separation of church and state is the only way to govern a diverse nation.
Agreed. The people that you love or associate with are not anti-American. They earnestly believe that their support of Trump is compatible with core values that you share. And so, this brings me to a conclusion…
There is an incredible disconnect between Trump supporters and those who believe that he must either step down or be removed from office. Supporters don’t see a danger in his decisions and behavior. Many see a man who is keeping promises and building a vibrant economy. They don’t share our sense that he is a threat to the economy, the environment, our alliances, democracy, and—especially—to domestic tranquility.
Let’s say that you accept my conclusion: Trump supporters share our desire for strong and fair nation, but they simply fail to see criminal behavior—or at least, serious shortcomings. How do we illuminate what seems obvious to you and to me, without appearing to condescend and shut them down?
In the past, I have talked down to my friends. I have chided them for what, to me, seems obvious. Of course, taking this tact only insults. It is not at all effective.
A better way to relate
Search for either a smoking gun or a fresh way to view events. The Forbes video of a Rachel Maddow, below, may help. In the first 6 minutes, she ties together a series of disturbing facts that should make any thinking person ask “Why?” Why would Trump do these things? What was he thinking? How could anyone pursue this long string of events? What influences him? Is he working for someone other than the American people?
See if you can get Trump supporters in your circle to get past their preconceptions about MSNBC and Rachel Maddow. The issue here is not the messenger, but the message.
To those of us who recognize the serious shortcomings of the president, the possibility of foreign influence is only one of many serious threats to our national interests. But, this video sheds light on this one threat in a way that may lead a few of your Trump-supporting friends to question their position. It’s not a magic bullet—but hopefully, it will contribute to their analysis.
Click below, and then on the photo of Trump (2nd from top).