This morning, I was looking through my Facebook memories, when I came across this post from 2018…
I have about had my fill of Trump supporters. It’s not about conservatives vs. liberals. Donald Trump seriously doesn’t give two shits about anyone but himself. It makes me sad to see people defending him, either willfully ignorant or just plain ignorant. I normally don’t care about politics or politicians, but he truly is a scumbag who seems hellbent on humiliating the most vulnerable people. It sickens me to see people cheering that on, especially since they seem to think he will do something for them. He won’t. He is a narcissist, and he does not care about anyone but himself. He’s basically akin to a reptile.
I have known some decent conservatives in my day. I used to vote Republican myself. Trump just turns my stomach. He’s destined to be a blight on our history.
As I reread this post this morning, I realize that I was spot on in 2018. Why other people didn’t see it, and still don’t see it, I will never know. I think some folks just hate to admit they’re wrong. And some people are secretly not good.
What prompted that post? Based on the original comments, it was inspired by an article that was run in the newspaper I used to read when I lived in Gloucester, Virginia. At the time, Donald Trump was talking about replacing SNAP cards (aka food stamps) with meal boxes. I read the article, then some of the comments. I got upset, and wrote this as an explanation.
…this status was inspired by comments I read last night in the Daily Press about Trump’s new food box idea. A couple of people commenting were people I used to know when I lived in Gloucester. I grew up in a small community among many conservatives. I was raised by conservative people– well, mainly my dad was conservative. Mom is less so. I know these people are not horrible folks deep down. But some of their comments on that article were just sickening. I never noticed this mindset as much before Trump came to power. It’s like he’s awakened all of the most base and vile instincts in certain populations and some people have become downright cruel. I find it depressing and had to vent. Thanks to those who took the time to read and comment. I’m particularly grateful to see the comments here are respectful, which is all I could ever ask for.
It seems that a lot of Trump supporters assume that anyone who needs food assistance is “taking advantage”. And so, they liked the food box idea. It would put a stop to the mythical “welfare queens” buying steak and lobster with their EBT cards. Beggars can’t be choosers, right? It doesn’t matter if the recipient can’t use or doesn’t want the food put in the boxes. Let’s just humiliate them as much as possible. If you’re broke, it’s obviously YOUR fault.
I used to have a “friend” who felt that anyone receiving food aid should be compelled to use the money on “healthy” food. She felt that since people were receiving taxpayer money (never mind that anyone who’s ever worked has paid into that fund), should have to buy what she considers “good food choices”. That means no birthday cake, sugary cereal, or soda.
On the surface, I can kind of see what she means. I’d love for people to eat healthier, and since the people receiving food aid are clearly broke, we need to keep them healthy so they won’t get a chronic disease that will put them in the hospital. Except that government food aid is not forever, and it doesn’t buy much. Recipients must regularly prove they need the help. And not everyone who needs a SNAP card has access to a good grocery store or even a kitchen. Sometimes, a frozen burrito that can be microwaved is the best choice simply because the person doesn’t have the time or the facilities to prepare a nice homemade pot of vegetable soup or brown rice. Sometimes people have allergies or religious restrictions that don’t allow certain foods. Sometimes people have special occasions they’d like to celebrate. Why is it anyone else’s business? Does being poor mean that a person can’t choose what he or she wants to eat?
I suspect some folks think that anyone who ends up “poor” has bad judgment. They don’t consider that sometimes very successful and intelligent people end up needing temporary help. My husband was once poor. When I met him, he was living on $600 a month, because he was sending the rest of his money to his ex wife and kids. He certainly didn’t need some conservative asshole telling him to eat a salad instead of a bowl of Sugar Smacks. But some people think that’s what’s required. For the record, Bill wasn’t getting food aid at that time. He mostly survived on per diem payments he got while traveling. At that time, he was lucky enough to have a job where he had to go TDY a lot. It was before we were married.
I see that I vented about this issue three years ago in my original blog. In that piece, I included these photos:
The people who came up with the food box idea tried to frame it in a way that almost sounded caring. They didn’t want people getting sick on rich, sugary foods that aren’t nutritious. The government would save money and people would be getting “healthy” (but simple carb heavy) foods instead of money on EBT cards that they can’t be trusted to spend appropriately. Carbs keep people compliant. They made it sound akin to a program like Blue Apron or Hello Fresh. BUT– unlike those meal kits, the USDA kits would not contain fresh fruits or vegetables. And the Hello Fresh and Blue Apron kits usually cost about $10 per meal, while the USDA kit would cost about $1.37. So it’s a win/win, right? The government saves money, and people get food. Never mind that some people won’t be able to prepare a pot of beans because they lack the facilities or have a disability that makes food preparation difficult.
But Trump doesn’t even have the humanity to try to frame the program in such a way. I think he thinks of the poor as “losers”, and they should just be happy with whatever scraps the government deigns to throw at them and shut the fuck up. For some participants, the food box program ended up being a bit of a flop, anyway, although some people were happy with the program. People did try to warn Trump that the food boxes weren’t a good fit for everyone.
I ended up unfollowing the Daily Press because of the comments that were written by the people who live in that part of Virginia. I just could not stomach reading them. There was just too much ignorance and meanness. One comment was written by a former neighbor of mine. I’m sure she doesn’t remember me, but I once went to a school dance with her son. Sadly, he passed away when he was 15 years old. He had a brain tumor. I remember her daughter, who is now married to the brother of a good friend of mine. They all still live in Gloucester. Many of them still hate poor people and love Trump.
Of course, in 2018, I had no idea what was to come… a poorly handled pandemic, an insurrection, and a second impeachment. Nevertheless, I wrote this:
To be honest, I never hated any politician before I encountered Trump. He makes my skin crawl. I hate what he’s doing to otherwise decent people, too, who are buying into his bullshit. I had to stop following the newspaper I have read my whole life because I could not stand to read the Trump inspired drivel in the comments. It was too depressing for me to see people that I know are basically decent falling into Trump’s disgusting plans for the country and cheering about it.
And for the Facebook post on the Daily Press, I wrote this:
And then I posted the status that leads today’s post. I didn’t know what was coming. I was depressed enough about Trump in 2018. Now, it looks like he could get away with egging on an insurrection. And people are still hoping that he’ll come back and run for office again!
But– as I write this, I do realize that we have a new president now. Joe Biden has brought some decency back into the U.S. presidency. So why can’t I relax? Because I feel like the past four years has just been a prelude to something worse. I know the basic type of person Trump is. When you deal with narcissists, you’re always waiting for the other shoe to drop.
I feel like the whole world has been dealing with a harassing narcissist for four years. And the clueless have championed him the whole time. Now, we read about politicians who have decided to get off the Trump train… people like Nikki Haley and Kevin McCarthy and even Mitch McConnell, who once kissed Trump’s ass and are now finding out that he’s utterly devoid of regard for anyone but himself.
I am pretty proud of Virginia, though… Virginia has finally gone blue. I know it pisses off a lot of people from my hometown. But to me, it’s a sign that the tide is turning somewhat. I get being conservative, but there’s a difference between being fiscally conservative and being inhumane. Trump is inhumane and dangerous. I hope the Senate does the right thing and convicts him. I doubt they will, but I have hope. Otherwise, the message is that a lame duck president can pull whatever outrageous bullshit they want to and get away with it. Hopefully, we will never again have one as narcissistic and hateful as Trump is.