Some have suggested that the Trump vote was a reaction against the snobbery of liberal elites. I generally agree that liberals have been insufficiently concerned about the plight of struggling, working class whites. But I have to call B.S. on the notion that liberals pioneered the art of holding others in contempt.
The dominant energy in conservative politics for several decades now has been to cast liberals as immoral, anti-American degenerates.
Let’s start with the subtle version which is that liberals do not live in the “real America.” As the GOP vice presidential nominee put it in 2008: “[We] believe that the best of America is in these small towns that we get to visit, and in these wonderful little pockets of what I call the real America, being here with all of you hardworking, very patriotic, very pro-America areas of this great nation.”
But conservatives have gotten much harsher than that. Liberals have been told that they were immoral, “less moral than other people,” and just want to “obliterate the whole notion of morality.” Liberal depravity caused 911 and the breakdown of the American family.
Simply put, liberals are evil.
Normally I’d say it was a cheap trick to pull crack-pot lines from the fringes of internet but the comments above came from, among others, Newt Gingrich, Rudy Guiliani, Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter, Mark Levin, and Sean Hannity, via websites such as Brietbart, Townhall, Newsmax, Infowars, The American Thinker, American Spectator and WND – in other words the people who are now in power or have the ear of our nation’s leaders.
Remember, it was Gingrich in 1996 who famously advised Republicans to “define our opponents” by using words like “traitors,” “sick,” “corrupt,” “anti-family,” and “anti-child.”
So while I do think liberals have to check any sense of snobbery, conservatives should acknowledge that for several decades they have waged a persistent, multi-front campaign to cast a third of the population as grotesquely depraved.