Burning down the neighborhood

Increasingly these days, I find myself thinking about the Detroit riots of 1967, that awful civil eruption when rioters burned-down their own neighborhoods and the stores at which they shopped. When the fires were out and the smoke had cleared, the damn fools had nothing to show for it but more than 3-dozen deaths and that they had made their own hard lives harder.

The analogy isn’t perfect, certainly — but it’s damn close to what the white middle class is doing to itself today with its mad enthusiasm for Donald Trump. They are cheering the rollbacks of union influence, though it was unions that built the middle class. They are eager to see Obamacare rolled back, though hundreds of thousands of them will die prematurely for want of care. They enthuse for the crippling of the EPA, and forget how Ohio’s Cuyahoga River used to catch fire. They are happy to see OSHA strait-jacketed, and forget that it wasn’t so long ago that the rule-of-thumb was that there was one death per every million dollars of industrial productivity. They rejoice that contraception and abortion are more difficult to obtain, and yearn to force gays et. al. back into the closet, and never give a thought to those whose lives they upend or even pause to ask how their own lives will benefit. They applaud when banking laws are relaxed and their Internet privacy is sold to the highest bidder.

They are systematically dismantling the very institutions that exist to protect them.

I kid you not: In my book, Trump supporters are as stupid and short-sighted as those idiot rioters who burned-down their own neighborhoods. And, likewise, they can’t see that they’re making their own climb back more difficult, that the orgy of destruction puts them further behind the eight-ball and lengthens the odds of restoring their lost normalcy. Bah.

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