Although Donald Trump won’t be quarterbacking for the Crimson Tide, he’ll doubtlessly have a lot of fans at football games at Bryant-Denny Stadium. The testosterone soaked, militaristic atmosphere at Bama football games is much akin to the sweat soaked air when Trump pontificates about women and Mexicans.
Salon’s Kim Messick explained the allure of Donald Trump in her article “Donald Trump is the last whimper of the angry white man: What’s really behind his stubborn lead“:
“His pugnacious manner, his willingness to insult opponents — or just anyone who disagrees with him — his brusque tone and dismissive gestures: All these things, we’re told, are like catnip to the Republican faithful. Mostly older and white and male, and wholly pissed-off, these folks are tired of namby-pamby politicians who whine about ‘bipartisan solutions’ and want to find ways to ‘work with the other side.’ They want someone who calls ‘em as he sees ‘em, and who sees, as they do, that ‘the other side’ largely consists of fools, traitors and knaves. Trump, it turns out, is their tribune.
“As explanations go, this one isn’t completely off-track. It does get one (very important) thing right: the GOP base is mad as hell. But as a theory of Republican politics, it’s sort of like attempts to attribute the Napoleonic Wars to Bonaparte’s shame over his small stature. There has to be something more than anger at work in the GOP, because anger alone doesn’t explain the distinctive shape of its obsessions. The real question is this: What is it angry about?
“A political party shapes its electorate as it shapes itself. The GOP as it exists today is the legacy of decisions made 50 years ago in the wake of white Southern reaction to the civil rights movement. To make itself attractive to the millions of voters suddenly unmoored from their century-long allegiance to the Democratic Party, Republicans adopted a darker, harsher version of conservative politics. They would no longer combine a pragmatic acceptance of the modern state with a cautious, realistic assessment of its limitations and delusions. The state engineered by progressive Republicans such as Theodore Roosevelt and New Deal Democrats such as his cousin, Franklin, was not a compromise with history to be carefully managed: it was an abomination to be destroyed. It did not represent a prudent adjustment to the new realities of industrial capitalism, urbanization, and aspirational democracy; it constituted a secular-minded reversal of a traditional order anchored in divinely decreed hierarchy.
“Today’s Republican electorate — mostly white and male, and clustered in the small towns of the Midwest and, especially, the South — is the electorate you get when this is the message you preach for half a century. It consists of the ever diminishing numbers of people who continue to find it compelling. But however implausible it may seem to the rest of us, this dark vision of modernity as essentially a kind of heresy is the source of the Tea Party’s rage. It has an idea of what the world should look like, and it is shocked and horrified by the distance of that idea from the reality it detects all around it.
“Central to that idea is the concept of dispossession. As I have argued before, the deeply Protestant roots of Southern revanchism posit a world in which rightful authority belongs to white heterosexual males who have, through fortitude and invention, wrested wealth from the detritus of a fallen world. The men of the Tea Party experience modern life as one continuous assault on this birthright. It began with the hated Lincoln’s defeat of the Slave Power, which toppled the racial order of the Old South; today’s hysteria over ‘illegals’— not to be confused with a rational concern for border security— simply sublimates this most primal of racial insults. Then came socialist-inspired efforts to level wealth and to distribute its hard-won gains to the undeserving and unproductive; then the agitations of ‘feminism’ to remove women from their rightful place in a domestic sphere presided over by men.
“But given their contempt for formerly subject groups, the Tea Party finds it difficult to credit them with all the blame for the disaster of modernity. Surely there was an enemy within? You bet there was. For the very elites who should have died defending the pre-modern order— the misty reaches of the ‘real’ America, the kingdom of the Constitution In Exile — instead capitulated to its usurpers, offering them aid and comfort if not outright cooperation. This is where Trump’s assaults on McCain and Bush come in. Each is a synecdoche, the former for a feckless warrior class that delivered the nation its first lost war; the latter for a flaccid cabal of economic royalists too inured to the corruptions of ‘big government.’
“The GOP base is indeed angry, but its anger is not some free-floating tantrum. It is an expression of a particular worldview, one that sees modern life as a deliberate, willful, well-designed effort to divest the virtuous white remnant of its privileges and to shower these on the unworthy and unholy. The Tea Party does not need a time-out; it needs better ideas about modern politics.”
Alabama native Condoleezza Rice, who once tossed the coin before a University of Alabama football game, has been suggested by Leada Gore as a possible Trump running mate.
Although Rice is a black woman, because of her warmongering, rightwing ways, a lot of Bama fans would say, “Great pair!”