If You Believe Every Email Forward You Receive, No Wonder You Feel Extremely Alienated
Credit: Gawker
November 23, 2015

A post at Breitbart draws attention to an Ipsos survey conducted last month that finds a large degree of alienation in the American public -- particularly among Republicans:

More than half (58%) of Americans don’t identify with what America has become. Almost as many (53%) feel like a “stranger in their own country”. This sense of loss is particularly pronounced when we look at party identification: while 45% of Democrats don’t identify with what America has become, a whopping 72% of Republicans don’t....

... fully 64% of Republicans are moderately or strongly nativist, including over a quarter (26%) who agree with all three of the nativist statements (compared to only 31% moderately or strongly nativist among Democrats)....

Ipsos VP Chris Jackson writes, "Such trends clearly show [Donald] Trump’s appeal among the Republican base."

Why are these voters -- Jackson says they tend to be whiter, older, and live in the South -- so alienated? There are plenty of legitimate reasons: the economic downturn, the disappearance of blue-collar middle-class jobs. The country is experiencing demographic changes to which these voters seem not to be able to adjust. The same goes for changing mores on sex and gender.

But part of the problem is that a lot of these people believes things that just aren't so. They and their alienated peers spread some of this misinformation themselves, via email and Facebook and other online forms of communication.

And now they have a presidential candidate who's just like them.

First Donald Trump asserted, on two occasions, that he watch televised footage of "thousands and thousands" of Muslims in Paterson, New Jersey, celebrating the 9/11 attacks on the day they occurred. Then he retweeted these bogus statistics on crime:

Regarding the celebrating Muslims in New Jersey, Snopes has debunked all the rumors spread over the years via email.

In Cedar Grove, NJ, a customer saw the owner of a Dunkin Donuts store burn the U.S. flag. In another Dunkin Donuts store in Little Falls, a customer saw a U.S. flag on the floor with Arabic writing all over it. In Wayne, NJ the employees of Arabic background were cheering behind the counter when the heard about the attacks. A customer throw his coffee at them and phoned the police.

None of this happened. Nor did this happen:

My mom's friend was in the National Liquidator store in the Forest Avenue Plaza when the crashes happened.

The workers, owners, etc. were all cheering and laughing.

Or this:

September 11th, a Budweiser employee was making a delivery to a convenience store in a town called McFarland [California]. He knew of the tragedy that had occurred in New York. He entered the business to find two Arabs whooping and hollering and really cheering it up. It was obvious they were elated with what had happened earlier. The Budweiser employee went to his truck, called his boss and told him of the very upsetting event. He didn't feel he could be in that store with those horrible people. His boss told him, "Do you think you could go in there long enough to pull every Budweiser product and item our beverage company sells there? We'll never deliver to them again."

The employee walked in, proceeded to pull every single product his beverage company provided and left with an incredible grin on his face. He told them never to bother and call for a delivery again.

As for the crime statistics, Think Progress has debunked them, as has the New York Daily News:

From the FBI's 2014 report on U.S. homicides, of the 3,021 Caucasian murder victims, 2,488 of their assailants were white, or 82 percent.

Trump's backed statistics ring just as wrong for whites killed by blacks. While the fear-mongering graphic claims it's at 81 percent, it's really 15 percent, according to the FBI's statistics -- much less than the mogul's tweet would suggest.

The other "data" suggested blacks killed by whites were at 2 percent while blacks killed by blacks were at 97 percent. Again, wrong.

The real numbers behind blacks killed by whites in 2014 are at least three times more than Trump's tweet suggested, at 7 percent. Blacks killed by blacks are more than 10 percent less than the bogus numbers in the presidential candidate's tweet.

The image itself could be based off of phony numbers. While it's cited from San Francisco's "Crime Statistics Bureau" as data from 2015, the city's annual police reports end at 2014, and do not break down homicides by race.

If you're the kind of person who receives and retransmits this sort of undigested, unverified alarmist nonsense on a daily basis, then of course you're going to feel especially alienated by your country. Look at all those murderous, white-hating black people! Look at all those defiant Muslims dancing for joy right under our noses in our own country while real Americans suffer!

Donald Trump is exactly like everyone's email-forwarding racist uncle. No wonder everyone's email-forwarding racist uncle plans to vote for him.

Crossposted from No More Mister Nice Blog

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