Max Boot: Trump ‘making me feel like a foreigner’ in my own country
By Melissa Mahtani and Catalina Gonella
Updated 1:56 PM ET, Sun December 3, 2017
(CNN) Author and foreign policy analyst Max Boot feels President Donald Trump is making him feel like a “foreigner” in his own country.
“He’s making me feel like an outsider, a Russian, a Jew, an immigrant,” Boot told CNN’s Fareed Zakaria.
“Anything but kind of a normal mainstream American, because of the way that he is dividing us and balkanizing us and seems to be catering to this white nationalist agenda.” …
Boot said it was “especially chilling” to hear people like Steve Bannon and Steve Miller trying to change the character of the country by “saying we’re not a nation of immigrants.”
And now from Foreign Policy, Mr. Invade-the-World/Invite-the-World himself, Max Boot, announced that Trump’s election has opened his eyes to White Privilege:
I used to be a smart-alecky conservative who scoffed at “political correctness.” The Trump era has opened my eyes.
BY MAX BOOT | DECEMBER 27, 2017, 1:55 PM
Max Boot is the Jeane J. Kirkpatrick senior fellow for national security studies at the Council on Foreign Relations. His forthcoming book is “The Road Not Taken: Edward Lansdale and the American Tragedy in Vietnam.”
In college — this was in the late 1980s and early 1990s at the University of California, Berkeley — I used to be one of those smart-alecky young conservatives who would scoff at the notion of “white male privilege” and claim that anyone propagating such concepts was guilty of “political correctness.” As a Jewish refugee from the Soviet Union, I felt it was ridiculous to expect me to atone for the sins of slavery and segregation, to say nothing of the household drudgery and workplace discrimination suffered by women. I wasn’t racist or sexist. (Or so I thought.) I hadn’t discriminated against anyone. (Or so I thought.) My ancestors were not slave owners or lynchers; they were more likely victims of the pogroms.
I saw America as a land of opportunity, not a bastion of racism or sexism. I didn’t even think that I was a “white” person — the catchall category that has been extended to include everyone from a Mayflower descendant to a recently arrived illegal immigrant from Ireland….
That last sentence is just bizarre: if you are claiming that “white” is a “catchall category” that has been “extended” to “include everyone” … and then as your examples of apparent polar opposites you come up with a Mayflower WASP and an Irishman … huh? What is going on in Max Boot’s head?
I went to look up famous Mayflower descendants and found a list of eleven that includes Bing Crosby and Alec Baldwin, both of whom I’d assumed were Irish. If you showed me photos of obscure people from the two groups (and left out all the many overlaps) and asked me to guess Irish or WASP, I’m guessing I might be able to be right, say, 55% of the time, maybe 60% of the time with training. But not much higher than that.
Well, live and learn. A quarter century is enough time to examine deeply held shibboleths and to see if they comport with reality. … In the last few years, in particular, it has become impossible for me to deny the reality of discrimination, harassment, even violence that people of color and women continue to experience in modern-day America from a power structure that remains for the most part in the hands of straight, white males. People like me, in other words.
But not exactly like me.
Whether I realize it or not, I have benefitted from my skin color and my gender — and those of a different gender or sexuality or skin color have suffered because of it.
This sounds obvious, but it wasn’t clear to me until recently. I have had my consciousness raised..
… It is even more pernicious to cling to the conceit, so popular among Donald Trump’s supporters, that straight white men are the “true” victims because their unquestioned position of privilege is now being challenged by uppity women, gay people, and people of color.
The videos do not lie. One after another, we have seen the horrifying evidence on film of cops arresting, beating, even shooting black people who were doing absolutely nothing wrong or were stopped for trivial misconduct. ….
The larger problem of racism in our society was made evident in Donald Trump’s election, despite — or because of — his willingness to dog-whistle toward white nationalists with his pervasive bashing of Mexicans, Muslims, and other minorities. Trump even tried to delegitimize the first African-American president by claiming he wasn’t born in this country, and now he goes after African-American football players who kneel during the playing of the anthem to protest police brutality. …
“Trump defeated Clinton among white voters in every income category,” from those making less than $30,000 to those making more than $250,000. In other words, Serwer writes, Trump does not lead a “working-class coalition; it is a nationalist one.” That doesn’t mean that every Trump supporter is a racist; it does mean that Trump’s victory has revealed that racism and xenophobia are more widespread than I had previously realized.