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Thread: How race as an issue threatens Democrats in 2020

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    How race as an issue threatens Democrats in 2020

    (1/2) Democrats are the party of racial equality. Republicans are less so.

    The topic here is the role of race as an issue in the 2020 election.

    Race is not a boolean issue. It's not "pro-racism and anti-racism, pick." It's different things to different people.

    And people largely don't understand what it is to others.

    To a person of color or liberal in a big city, race might mean wanting to get closer to racial equality, to removing remaining injustices. Unequal pay? Make it better. Unequal criminal justice? Make it better. That's the agenda. And oppose those who fight FOR injustice. They largely see Republicans as opposing all these things, or at least not supporting them much.

    I think race to a white non-Democrat is a much different issue. Most are not actively wanting anything bad for people of color. For them race is largely a non-issue that's little but an annoyance getting brought up over and over and over, and often feeling they're attacked wrongly as 'racist', and that it's simply an issue Democrats use to pander and get elected. I don't think they relate much to any 'issues' around it and just want people to shut up about it.

    So, how does this situation affect 2020? I think Democrats want to run on the position they have above, and many members of the party want to hear that.

    But when that famous 'white rural voter' sees the Democrats doing that, he feels alienated - there they go again fixating on race, annoyingly, not talking to them. They have their own set of 'race issues', which are more on the 'other side', not liking with there are things they don't like regarding minorities - and that includes being too lenient on illegal immigration giving too many benefits to immigrants or people of color, fear of crime they relate to people of color - they're mostly concerned about 'problems' from people of other races, and like to hear candidates who will try to prevent those problems, more than they're concerned about the problems faced by those people of color.

    So Democrats care a lot bout the story of 'police officer wrongly kills unarmed black man', and non-Democrats are likely more concerned about 'illegal immigrant commits murder'. Race just means very different things to different people as an issue.

    That doesn't mean the non-Democrats are against the Democratic goals; it means that they care about different things, and (probably correctly) feel Democrats don't care about those same things, and they're rather indifferent to the Democrats' agenda.

    So they don't so much mind if Democrats reform police violence, reform criminal justice, create programs for opportunities for people of color, and so on, they just don't care and feel Democrats aren't caring about them if they talk about those policies.

    And trump uses race in his politics also - appealing to resentments around it. People feel 'comfortable' around him, because they feel they won't get attacked, and that their resentments against things like illegal immigration fit in and are welcomed.
    Last edited by Craig234; 07-14-19 at 05:18 PM.

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    Re: How race as an issue threatens Democrats in 2020

    (2/2) Here's the key point for the election.

    Democrats already have the votes on race from Democrats. For other voters, it's an uphill battle; the issue is, should race be a main election issue, or should something else, to help elect a Democrat?

    I suspect that if race IS a main election issue, trump will try to make it work to his benefit, and it's not clear much of the country beyond Democrats will find that a big reason to vote for Democrats. It sort of doesn't matter to them and makes them feel Democrats don't care about their issues, so why vote for them.

    I suspect, that while Democrats should support good policies on race, they might benefit by leaving it our of the election as a main issue, instead picking an issue that appeals to the 'swing' voters they need that Republicans lose to them on.

    And that might be economic inequality, economic well-being, Bernie's agenda (healthcare, education etc.), and so on.

    What people often don't understand is that elections are largely not about the differences on issues between candidates, but WHICH issues voters decide on. Do they pick the Republican they agree with on some things, or the Democrat they agree with on others?

    And that's where the choice lies, should Democrats try to make race a major campaign issue, or economics, or something else?

    If Democrats talk a lot about race, I suspect a lot of the swing voters they want will be alienated, not because they're 'against' the right positions on the issue, but that they feel alienated from the candidates, that they're talking to 'other people', not them.

    So I suspect Democrats are better off politically to have good strong positions on race issues, but not to make them central to the campaign, not to let trump pick race as the deciding issue in the election, where most non-Democrats might prefer him - if not entirely, as the lesser evil to the Democrats who are 'pandering'.

    I suspect Democrats are better off making the election about issues where they beat trump with those swing voters.

    That's how trump won - he simply had a pollster who found out what the voters trump wanted, wanted to hear, and he said it. It's not that complicated.

    Non-Democratic voters don't seem to make trump's flaws what they vote on, so that's not the main issue, either. Democrats need to give them a reason THEY want to vote for Democrats. If they don't, Democrats might be at mercy of the economy - if it crashes, they win, if not, trump wins.

    I'd like to see them run on being 'on the people's side' to get people more power and money, and showing that trump backs the 'swamp' and wealthy special interests. Make that the issue - or something else the swing voters care about.

    This might sound like making race issues less important. It's not. What parties do and what they run on don't have to be the same issues. They shouldn't be dishonest - like Republicans are when what they really care about is plutocracy but don't admit it - but the campaign can pick different issues to make the maim campaign issues for voters.

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    Re: How race as an issue threatens Democrats in 2020

    Somebody once said something to the effect of "Nobody wakes up in the middle of the night worrying about issues related to their tribe."*

    The point this statement makes is shrewd, and political candidates ignore it at their peril.




    *An obvious exception to this would be anybody belonging to an ethnic group that is routinely targeted for deportation or persecution.

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    Re: How race as an issue threatens Democrats in 2020

    I didn't mean for this thread to get into this, but I'll mention a side point that racism is interesting.

    If a white voters just feels uncomfortable with a Jesse Jackson or other black man as president, to them, that's about they're not used to it, who knows what he'll do, he'll probably only care about black people and not them - it just creates a sense that they just *feel* more comfortable with a white candidate than the 'risk' of the unknown.

    And to them, that is not racism. It's not that they hate the black person - they just prefer someone they're comfortable with.

    But that can also be viewed as very wrong and racist - because the effect is to bar black people from being president, and it doesn't seem that important whether it's because of that 'comfort' issue or because they're white supremacists who hate black people. Same basic effect.

    And these are the sorts of things that prevent communication and understanding - the Democrat says 'you racist' and the non-Democrats just resents that and disagrees and feels wrongly attacked, reinforcing their feeling of being more comfortable with white people who don't call them racist.

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    Re: How race as an issue threatens Democrats in 2020

    Quote Originally Posted by Cardinal View Post
    Somebody once said something to the effect of "Nobody wakes up in the middle of the night worrying about issues related to their tribe."*

    The point this statement makes is shrewd, and political candidates ignore it at their peril.




    *An obvious exception to this would be anybody belonging to an ethnic group that is routinely targeted for deportation or persecution.
    What? Is being an illegal alien now an ethnic group?

    Is there a traditional Illlegalalienistan with a unique language and culture they all come from?

    I've never never heard of this ethnicity before.
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    Re: How race as an issue threatens Democrats in 2020

    Forget about white voters who don't vote D; the important burgeoning trend regarding race in politics is the war within the DNC itself. AOC is now content to accuse Nancy Pelosi of racism, over Pelosi's position as the House Speaker whose job it is to seek party unity in the House. AOC represents the voice of young non-white Democratic voters, who are the future of the country, barring some radical change in demographic trends. White Democratic voters are going to be a non-entity within their party, as white GOP voters are in California. Just a matter of time.
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    Re: How race as an issue threatens Democrats in 2020

    The democrats are suffering for Obamas racial identity politics. Buy dividing the democrat part of the USA into an infinite number of sub groups, each with their unique outrage button, they have created an insatiable monster incapable of compromise without agreeing to vanish. People who hold tightly to beliefs don’t let go that easily.
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    Re: How race as an issue threatens Democrats in 2020

    I would argue that Obama and his race politics will hurt Dems in 2020. People see that we will be plunged into a race war again, with BLM rioting in the streets, with thugs getting sainted, the MSM repeating lie after lie after lie.
    I dread having another President like that.

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    Re: How race as an issue threatens Democrats in 2020

    Quote Originally Posted by chuckiechan View Post
    The democrats are suffering for Obamas racial identity politics. Buy dividing the democrat part of the USA into an infinite number of sub groups, each with their unique outrage button, they have created an insatiable monster incapable of compromise without agreeing to vanish. People who hold tightly to beliefs don’t let go that easily.
    Cross posted with you! Yes, the Democrats are grievance-driven. America is BAD. America needs "fundamental change". "Diversity is our strength" so we must allow open borders and anyone to just walk right in.
    The 2020 Democrats just ooze negativity and stoke pain and fear.

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    Re: How race as an issue threatens Democrats in 2020

    Quote Originally Posted by Acadia View Post
    Cross posted with you! Yes, the Democrats are grievance-driven. America is BAD. America needs "fundamental change". "Diversity is our strength" so we must allow open borders and anyone to just walk right in.
    The 2020 Democrats just ooze negativity and stoke pain and fear.
    Hunger for power and control is their motivator.
    They still are not over the fact that Trump beat Hillary though they can't even be honest about that.

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