My name is Nicholas Pell and I’m a Donald Trump voter. A proud Trump voter, in fact. I’ve been on the Trump Train since day one, weathering the storm. In that time, I’ve been called an idiot more times than I can count. Sure, I’m voting for him, but I’ve also given him hundreds of dollars. For me, he’s not “the lesser of two evils.” He’s the best major party candidate in my lifetime.
And I’m definitely not an idiot. Nor am I a genius. My IQ is in the 120s, which means I’m smarter than a lot of people, but also smart enough to know I’m not actually all that smart. The latter is an important awareness to have, one largely missing from those in the 110s, who constitute the single most dangerous group of people on Earth.
I’m not trying to give you a sales pitch for Trump—though, hey, I’d be stoked if you voted for him. I want you to understand why 15 million people voted for him in the primaries and why tens of millions more are getting ready to vote for him in the general. What follows are four big political reasons we’re on the Trump Train, despite professional risk and personal insult.
For years, people have looked for a candidate who said what he thought, even if it rubbed people the wrong way, who wasn’t beholden to warmongers and big banks and a small clique of Evangelical Christians. Well, like it or not, here he is.
1. Trump Has All the Right Enemies
This is first for a reason. You can judge a man by his enemies and Donald Trump has all the right ones.
The Bush Family hates him for humiliating Jeb. Journalists hate him because he refuses to play by their rules. Wall Street hates him because he doesn’t need their money. The neoconservatives hate him because he won’t commit to an endless supply of American bodies for a third world sand trap we have no business being in. The Religious Right hates him because he secured the nomination without engaging in the kabuki they demand as fealty from all candidates. The reactive left hates him because he shoots from the hip and doesn’t engage in politically correct newspeak.
For years, people have looked for a candidate like this: Someone who said what he thought, even if it rubbed people the wrong way, who wasn’t beholden to warmongers and big banks and who would end the influence of a small clique of Evangelical Christians on American politics. Well, like it or not, here he is.
2. We Are Getting Ripped Off In Trade
Many moons ago, America used to make things. Starting with Reagan and accelerating with Clinton, the American economy has shifted away from a manufacturing-based economy to one based primarily on financial speculation, parasitism and artificially created bubbles.
This shift in how wealth (if, indeed, the exotic speculation and toxic debt fueling the American economy can be called “wealth”) is created has a deadly impact on American life. I don’t have to tell you that if you’re from Detroit or Scranton or Akron. Sure, America is making more stuff, but we’re employing fewer people to do it. Rust Belt cities like Gary, Indiana, look like someone dropped a bomb on them.
The trend toward fewer people making more widgets might be irreversible. Structural unemployment exists. I’m not suggesting, like an apocryphal Soviet bureaucrat once did, that we use shovels where a bulldozer would be more appropriate because it “creates jobs.” What I am suggesting is that trade deals creating a pipeline of American jobs to the third world—with which American labor cannot and, perhaps more to the point should not have to compete—are bad for America, not just economically, but socially as well. Suicide, drug abuse, welfare dependency… these are all things that come in when the jobs leave town.
If Trump were running against NAFTA and had no other positions on anything, that alone would be able to get my vote. We might not be able to reverse the trend, but we can at least stop the bleeding.
Donald Trump will make concealed carry “shall issue” and “stand your ground” the law of the land. He will re-institute the rule of law in America. We could really use that.
3. I’m Tired of Urban Lawlessness
There’s a riot about, what, every month or so in America at this point? The actual cause of the riots isn’t particularly germane to this topic for me. What matters is that they’re happening.
So what the hell does this have to do with who’s president? Well, I’d say that it has quite a bit to do with who’s president, considering that our current president’s position seems to be going on television and giving speeches about how people are doing bad things for a good reason. I don’t want a president who tries to understand rioters. I want a president who cracks skulls.
And then there’s the small matter of violent crime going up in some cities. Yeah, sure, crime is down as a whole, but there are a number of cities in America where the murder rate is skyrocketing. Strangely, these are all cities where law-abiding citizens are virtually prohibited from private handgun ownership and carrying concealed weapons to defend themselves and their families. Being from a part of the country with tiny states, it just doesn’t make any sense to me that you can’t carry a concealed weapon in Massachusetts, despite having a permit for Rhode Island.
Trump on the stump has said there’s no place for rioting in America. He knows that crime disproportionately impacts the poor. And as a life-long New Yorker, he’s seen which policies work to curb urban crime and disorder and which are abject failures. Donald Trump will make concealed carry “shall issue” and “stand your ground” the law of the land. He will re-institute the rule of law in America. We could really use that.
4. It’s the Immigration, Stupid
Look, no discussion of Trump’s presidential campaign would be complete without talking about his immigration stance. This is what has driven his campaign, especially in the primary season.
There’s a couple things worth discussing when we discuss America’s insane immigration policy of the last 50 years. First, unless you believe that the labor market is driven by wholly different forces than every other market (i.e. supply and demand), it’s hard to make the case that you’re concerned for unskilled workers, minorities and recent immigrants when you propose continuing to import an endless supply of unskilled, low-wage labor. Immigrants don’t “do the jobs Americans won’t do.” They do jobs Americans will do at a price they won’t do it for, effectively creating a race to the bottom with wages for low-skilled employment.
There’s also the assimilation question. Sure, Italians, Germans, Irish and others assimilated in the late-19th and early-20th Century. It’s hard to separate that from the fact that immigration was brought to a screeching halt for nearly 50 years. German-language schools—even the private ones—were shuttered. America demanded that new arrivals become Americans.
Now? Well, now academia and the media tell recent arrivals to demand more and to resent the country adopting them. Unsurprisingly, resentment is the result. Europe, where I currently live, shows the fruits of this kind of immigration: Second-generation immigrants tend to be more radicalized than their parents. America itself is building up a nice little resume of second-generation radicalized terrorists.
If nothing else, it’s clear to me that the status quo on immigration isn’t working. It needs to be rethought from the perspective of what’s best for America and American citizens, not what makes pundits and politicians feel virtuous or what helps the bottom lines of multinationals.
Look, it’s entirely possible that Donald Trump has spent the last 40 years feigning concern about the American worker and disastrous trade policies. The entire thing might be a giant con game where I’m the victim.
But, I sort of doubt it. On the other hand, Hillary Clinton has a long track record of corruption, incompetence and criminality without even bringing her sleaze ball husband into it. So Trump has my support. I doubt I’ve convinced anyone to join me, but I hope I’ve at least shown one person why smart(ish) people might get on board with The Donald. Happy voting!