We already empathize with Trump supporters on policy. We want them all to have healthcare, to make a living wage, to have a fair and equal justice system. We don't have to empathize with them because they voted against those things and lost.
Everyone I know who was upset about Trump winning was upset because we knew he'd hurt a lot of people. The Trump supporters I know who are upset are mostly upset because he can't hurt the right people anymore. It's not the same impulse.
So while there's no need to behave like they did, maybe give them some time to experience the normalcy of a Biden presidency and think about what they did when they voted for Trump. They don't get to sweep it under the rug yet.
(And I have a family full of Trump supporters so don't yammer at me about bubbles. I know way more Trumpists than they know liberals of any stripe. I'm not gonna tell em to cry more but I'm not handing out hugs either.)
And I wrote about the kind of empathy that's important, and Trump ran against, here washingtonpost.com/outlook/2020/1…

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More from @espiers

5 Nov
I'm not sure the problem is that we don't understand it. It's that there are certain things that are not reconcilable. Bipartisan work involves tradeoffs and compromise not necessarily consensus.
Which is not to say that there *aren't* people who don't understand the motives of Trump voters, but that's certainly not the case for, say, those of us who have Trumpist families in red states. I also think people don't understand the difficulty of actual political persuasion
Or how, when it happens, it tends to happen slowly and incrementally.
Read 5 tweets
5 Nov
I don't want to sound like a broken record on this, but if you think the left is overreaching on social issues but you insist that you're not racist, maybe don't use the word "woke" derisively. You can talk about overreach without doing that.
It's a word that comes out of the Black activist community and when you use it as a slur, you're telegraphing disrespect for people who are fighting for their civil rights. Maybe you only *mean* to insult overprivileged white hipsters. It doesn't matter. It's still disrespectful
And a lot of people I've seen do this are professional writers. You have the language at your disposal. Use it.
Read 4 tweets
5 Nov
This is a sentiment centrists keep making with no empirical evidence to support it. And the thing is, progressives went all in on Biden once he was the candidate. They worked on the campaign, activists got their orgs to do GOTV, people showed up.
The idea that progressives (or the "woke" as racist conservatives who are Republicans like to call them) are limiting reach for Democrats is just wrong. Empirically and strategically. Not only are they not preventing Dems from winning, you cannot win without them.
Look at where our crucial victories are right now. Do you think Detroit is a bastion of crypto-conservatives? Atlanta? Full of Rs who's be Ds if we jettisoned LGBTQ rights? Reproductive rights? No. That's stupid.
Read 6 tweets
4 Sep
Two of my siblings, my dad, and three of my grandfathers served in the military. (I was adopted, so have more grandpas than most people.) My sister Bobbi just retired from service a couple of weeks ago.
All of them joined for different reasons, but all of them joined in part because they thought of it as public service, something that the president can't wrap his head around because the concept of sacrifice for others is completely alien to him.
(Also kind of thinking particularly of my grandfather Apolinar, the good looking guy on the left here, a decorated veteran and 1st gen Mexican-American who served in the 82nd Airborne. Stephen Miller would have probably tried to deport him.)
Read 5 tweets
9 Aug
I grew up Southern Baptist in the 80/early 90s & the idea that conservative xians are perpetually persecuted is a big part of the culture. Even when everyone in the immediate culture is also a conservative Evangelical & the persecution consists of people mildly disagreeing w you
It predates the bad faith elements of the right's war on a completely fabricated idea of "cancel culture" but it has similar elements: people who think I'm wrong are persecuting me when they say so, especially if they argue that my position is morally suspect.
Also: people who reject my orthodoxy are automatically antagonistic to it, in a very active sense. (Which is a kind of collective narcissism IMO, but I remember this line of thinking very clearly.)
Read 4 tweets
31 Jul
I think people underestimate the extent to which both Jared and Trump are angry at blue state elites for never really accepting them. They both have massive inferiority complexes, even with all of their wealth and privilege. So of course they're happy to let, say, NYC die.
It probably feels like revenge for them. (They'll show those snobby old money / old power NYCers who's boss! And while they're at it, the DC elite, the SF elites, etc.)
They want validation from competent, smart people too, and the only way to get that is to be competent and smart themselves. Which would take work, and humility, neither of which they're up for. So not getting approval from those quarters makes them angry, too.
Read 6 tweets

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