To lead by fear is not leadership. Fear is an illusion used by those who lack the basic traits required to truly be a leader and that illusion can only be maintained for so long. Because like a small child most people will wake up one day and realize, for one reason or another, that the boogeymen used by the so-called leader to scare them does not really exist and once that illusion is gone so too is the illusion of power that the supposed leader wields.
The real leader has it within them the ability to inspire rather than scare. The capacity to encourage rather than discourage. The vision to show others that change can be a good thing and should not be feared. That we should not look to impeded that which is different but instead seek it out so that we may tear down the walls that divide us and confidently moving forward rather than cowering behind a wall of fear.
The true leader leaves a legacy, one of integrity, intelligence and truth.
How was it that Donald Trump, when all the exit polls showed otherwise, was able to capture the Presidency of the United States?
How is it that Donald Trump, when polls show he has one of the lowest approval ratings of all time, able to keep GOP politicians from revolting against him?
Why is it that Donald Trump has made such little effort to expand “his base” and seemingly is unconcerned about it?
I’m here to tell you it’s because of America’s dirty little secret. You see when we watch one of the many “campaign rallies” Trump held before the election and amazingly continues to hold after, at tax payer cost, we see what many liberals characterize as his base. Low income, poorly educated white males and females. Liberals see a stereotypical person they likely refer to as Billy Bob with a smirk and his wife sporting Make America Great Again hats, spewing hatred and fear against people of color. It’s why Trump constantly uses the wall and cherrypicks acts of violence and other criminal activities by immigrants in his speeches. Why he throws out lines like shithole countries. Liberals summarize Billy Bob is so poorly educated that he easily fooled by Trump because Trump appeals to their greatest fear. That they are losing a grip on “their” country.
But what Trump and the GOP know is there are a number of well educated, highly compensated, extremely polished individuals who deep down harbor the very same fears. They are Trump’s shadow base. They have friends who are people of color. They’re children play with your children. They are registered Democrats and they never ever say they like Donald Trump. In fact their social media is likely littered with posts you’ve liked denouncing Trump. But when they get behind that voting curtain and they are all alone they’re pulling the lever for Trump.
Why? Because way more than “Billy Bob” this was their country. White men of power had a long uninterrupted run of success in this country. They were the majority, ran all the big corporations and controlled the country’s politics. But then census data projected the US will become ‘minority white’ in 2045. More and more people of color began showing up in the executive lunch room and on the country club golf courses. Then the unthinkable happened Barack Obama won the Presidency. Not only did he win he and his family were looked at with the highest level of respect around the globe. It wasn’t so much about Obama’s politics, tough it would be naive to completely dismiss that, it was looking at a well educated, articulate man of color stand in front of the world as America’s leader. Sure there had been plenty well educated, articulate men and women of color in the spotlight before Obama but none had ever been President. Obama represented a glimpse into the future of this country and for some that was a frightening future
Now don’t get me wrong I don’t think the vast majority of white people are arming themselves and storing canned goods in preparation for the coming brown people apocalypse. In fact I’m more hopeful than ever that this country is headed in the right direction, if ever so slowly, with respect to race relations. But there are still a few dinosaurs out there who hide in plain sight fearful of the future. They’re America’s dirty little secret. They’re Trump’s shadow base and it would be best not to underestimate them again in 2020.