Trump’s path to victory was through the corrupt news media
Donald Trump won the presidency by ignoring the media bigotry, bias and attacks, and concentrating on connecting with the majority of Americans. His base not only included the so-called “lower educated” White males but also a large segment of women, hispanics, many Christian Arabs and Muslims, and Blacks.
By Ray Hanania
Although the media and Trump’s critics tried hard to blame it all on Trump’s candidacy, the truth is that it is the media that enables the racism, the misogyny and the hatred in its biased reporting of ethnic communities, issues and the political process.
The corruption of the news media was aggravated by a calculating Hillary Clinton, who with her husband former President Bill Clinton, are legends in their own minds when it comes to mass public manipulation. They think they can manage any issue, good, bad or ugly, into something that will be favorable to them.
But that didn’t happen Tuesday, November 8, 2016 when Trump easily defied grossly inaccurate media polling and predictions to win more than the 270 delegates needed to become president.
How did Trump do it?
Speaker of the House Paul Ryan expressed it best when he said that Trump not only ended up unifying the Republican Party and helping the GOP hang on to control of the Congress and Senate, but he heard an American voice that felt abandoned that no one else could hear.
“Let me just say, this is the most incredible political feat I have seen in my lifetime. This is something you’ve heard me say time and again. Seven out of 10 Americans, they do not like the direction our country is going. Many of our fellow citizens feel alienated and have lost faith in our core institutions. They don’t feel heard and they don’t feel represented by those in office,” Ryan said in a press conference Wednesday morning.
“But Donald Trump heard a voice out in this country that no one else heard. He connected with — he connected in ways with people no one else did. He turned politics on its head. And now, Donald Trump will lead a unified Republican government. And we will work hand-in- hand on a positive agenda to tackle this country’s big challenges.”
For months the news media was projecting that Clinton had “many paths to election victory” to accumulate the minimum 270 delegates needed to win the American presidency, and Trump only had a few.
The media created a tsunami of bias and slanted coverage that included the online news sites like the biased and bigoted Huffington Post, Politico, Real Clear Politics, broadcast television news outlets like Good Morning America and nearly every major newspaper in the country.
Pollster after pollster predicted a Clinton victory. And when Trump appeared to take the lead in the few polls, they couched his chances in skepticism, questioning their own polling results.
For example, when Hillary Clinton was projected to be trailing Trump 43 percent to 45 percent in one poll last month, the media and pollsters quickly noted that the 2 percentage point difference was negligible because it was well within the 4 point “margin of error.”
But when Clinton was leading Trump, there was never any mention of the “margin of error.”
Trump found himself easily baited by loaded incendiary questions from the news media which focused heavily on accusations that Trump had sexually abused women, reporting on every possible accusation that was made by anyone. But the same news media avoided discussion of accusations that Hillary Clinton had bullied women who had been preyed upon by her husband’s voracious sexual predatory practices while he was president of the United States.
Monica Lewinsky was just one victim and there were more than a dozen more.
Some of the biggest controversies were created by the news media, like when Trump was asked days after two Muslim terrorists police said were linked to ISIS and al-Qaeda murdered 22 people at a San Bernardino health center in December 2015 whether or not the country should halt Muslim immigration into the country.
Trump responded that he felt a “ban” would be a good way to pause immigration until the country’s law enforcement agencies could better identify those immigrants who sought to bring in violence and terrorism to the country.
Whenever the topic was raised, it was always framed as “a ban on Muslims entering America” without ever putting in the context of a temporary measure to help the country’s judicial system properly screen immigrants.
The media animosity elevated the issue into one of bigotry against Muslims for the sake of bigotry that was irrelevant to the rising violence and terrorism threatening our country.
Trump’s message calling for “change” in our government resonated with a majority of Americans. He was able to contrast himself against Hillary Clinton who epitomized the essence of the insider establishment.
But Trump did connect with the voters and he openly challenged the media and the political system calling them both “rigged” and biased. The media responded by ridiculing Trump’s assertions but the masses of voters did not listen to the biased news media.
Worse was the ironic twisting of facts by the supporters of Hillary Clinton who used hatred, bigotry of their own and name-calling to attack anyone who dared to challenge the media bias or to defend Trump’s campaign.
And the bottom line as voters left the polls was that nearly 90 percent of his more than 59 million supporters said they wanted change.
The exit polling also showed that despite the dire assertions of racism and misogyny, Trump had strong support not only among women but also Hispanics and African Americans.
Many conservative Democrats sometimes referred to as “Reagan Democrats” also voted heavily for Trump over Clinton, the antithesis of change.
And the issue of Muslims was also exaggerated to posit that Muslims were overwhelming against Trump when in fact Trump had many Muslim and Arab American supporters.
Americans, thanks to the bigotry and bias of the news media, views all “Arabs,” Christian and Muslim, as being “Muslim.” The media lumps in every category of “Arab Muslims” and “non-Arab Muslims” to create one dark vanilla stereotype of all Arabs, Muslims, Middle Eastern people, dark skinned Asians and anyone who looked “Muslim.”
And since the system ignores and marginalizes Arabs and Muslims – such as excluding us from the U.S. Census to dilute our influence, it’s easy for the media to exploit us and take advantage of us for their own selfish purposes.
A good example is how the media missed the mark in its coverage of the “Muslim community” in Detroit. According to the news media, all Arabs in Detroit are Muslims and therefore the handful of Muslims who advocated against Trump represented the large voting black there.
In reality, Trump won a majority oft he Arabs and secular Muslim voting population in the Great Detroit region, a population that included a massive Christian Arab and Christian Middle Eastern (Chaldean) population. Many Chaldean leaders openly said they were supporting Trump because they saw him as the only candidate able to stand up to Islamic extremism and religious Middle East terrorism, but that wasn’t a good enough story to the biased mainstream news media. They were ignored. Yet they gave Trump the less than 13,000 votes that separated Trumps Michigan statewide win from Hillary Clinton’s statewide loss.
Donald Trump won the election because despite his flippant rhetoric on women, Muslims, Hispanics and minorities, he did a better job of connecting with American voters. And his critics have no right to point fingers at that massive majority of American voters and somehow declare them flawed for supporting Trump, a hypocritical act that makes them worse than the people they accuse of bigotry because they are the biggest bigots.
Every major media predicted a Hillary Clinton win and she did not win. It’s more than just an error and system flaw. It’s a cancer in American journalism that journalists and the media industry hate to acknowledge, address or confess.
Hopefully, Trump’s presidency will help bring the bias of the mainstream news media to an end. The media corruption is a bigger threat to democracy than a system that allows Americans to cast their vote for the candidate they believe is best suited to represent this country.
(Ray Hanania is an award winning American Arab and Palestinian political columnist and writer. He writes for the ArabNews.comaaaa, TheDailyHookah.com and TheArabDailyNews.com. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.)