Long, interesting article by Oleg Atbashian, a writer and graphic artist from the former USSR
March 28, 2016 Some of my best friends are Trump supporters By Oleg Atbashian
Trump supporters are, perhaps, the only group of voters in this nation's history who have been so viciously and consistently maligned, and in such a coordinated manner, by both political parties. At the same time, not much is known about them, despite the recent spate of articles attempting to explain the phenomenon. The problem with that is that the authors admittedly don't know any of the Trump supporters themselves. Well, I happen to know quite a few of them personally.
Full disclosure: first, I can't vote because I'm not a U.S. citizen yet, despite my best and decades-long efforts -- but let's leave the immigration system's misplaced priorities for another day.
Second, I like to form my opinions about the candidates and their supporters independently, without taking advice from media pundits or Facebook messages from pro-Cruz acquaintances.
Third, I like both Cruz and Trump. I'm not as passionate about them as some; I'm merely pragmatic: I like anyone who can stop America's descent into socialism or, better yet, reverse the course entirely. I also realize that America has come to a point when having big ideas is no longer enough; in order to shake up the system and get the economy moving the next president must also be a bigger-than-life mover and shaker.
Since I'm not allowed to vote, I remain simply an objective observer of American politics, judging the process from the perspective of a former Soviet citizen, who during the times of the glorious Union of Soviet Socialist Republics was forced to cast single-name ballots for candidates I didn't know nor cared about. A total 100% voter turnout in practice meant total apathy: most people dropped paper ballots into the boxes without reading them. The occasional rare signs of passion were the ballots with crossed-out names and large capital letters saying, BLOODSUCKERS ALL; those were extracted by the KGB for handwriting analysis. Voting had become a periodic ritual of obedience and surrender before the powerful state and a reminder that we were all equal slaves in the eyes of our masters.
This year's election especially fits the above caricature. The strongest fire from all media portholes and loopholes is directed at the Republican frontrunner, Donald Trump, and his supporters. They are being described as uneducated, angry, vengeful, racist, xenophobic, and plain stupid. Authors of these assumptions, mostly writing from within the Boston-New York-Washington corridor, admit that they don't even know anyone who likes Trump. But how can they write about what they don't know?
Imagine how different this race would be if the GOP hadn't tried to salt the earth around Trump and his supporters, says Christina. She believes that if they had only remained neutral, the party would currently be growing by leaps and bounds. The very landscape of the electorate would be shifting towards conservatism and away from liberalism. But it was more important for the party elites to control people than to listen to them.