Some of those answers may be found in a new book written by law professor Joan C. Williams, “White Working Class: Overcoming Class Cluelessness in America.” In fact, troubled progressives are probably the best audience for this particular publication.
Why? Because I cannot possibly recommend this book to independent conservatives who would like to see smaller government, sensible spending, and an adherence to constitutional principles. The reasons include:
1) The fact that the entire premise of this book is attempting to fix the ‘broken’ relationship between America’s liberal elite and the white working class, with no understanding of how cherished progressive theories (e.g., climate change) harm these same people.
2) The requisite snark against President Donald Trump, which is a signal to the liberal readers that the author is still one of them.
“If Trump fails to rejuvenate Flint, Michigan, and Youngstown, Ohio — and he probably will — things could turn even uglier.
3) Writing about Tea Party without either interviewing members of these citizen action groups or understanding of their actual concerns or motivations.
“Tea Party members believe that the “federal government was taking money from…people of good character and giving to people of bad character,” found a 2016 study.
Ultimately, the book is little more than one blog post that has been expanded to make it saleable on the book market. The original post by Williams, who is a law professor at the University of California, Hastings School Law and founder of Center for Work Life Law (focused on creating new initiatives to help women to succeed in the workplace), would probably make for more satisfying reading for many here:
…Hillary Clinton…epitomizes the dorky arrogance and smugness of the professional elite. The dorkiness: the pantsuits. The arrogance: the email server. The smugness: the basket of deplorables. Worse, her mere presence rubs it in that even women from her class can treat working-class men with disrespect. Look at how she condescends to Trump as unfit to hold the office of the presidency and dismisses his supporters as racist, sexist, homophobic, or xenophobic.
Trump’s blunt talk taps into another blue-collar value: straight talk. “Directness is a working-class norm,” notes Lubrano. As one blue-collar guy told him, “If you have a problem with me, come talk to me. If you have a way you want something done, come talk to me. I don’t like people who play these two-faced games.” Straight talk is seen as requiring manly courage, not being “a total wuss and a wimp,” an electronics technician told Lamont. Of course Trump appeals. Clinton’s clunky admission that she talks one way in public and another in private? Further proof she’s a two-faced phony.
She has recently followed up that article with a companion piece:
But something is seriously off when privileged whites dismiss the economic pain of less privileged whites on grounds that those other whites have white privilege. Everyone should have access to good housing and good jobs. That’s the point.
Two changes are required for Democrats to diminish the 39-point margin by which whites without college degrees voted for Mr. Trump over Hillary Clinton.
This first concerns social honor. Too often in otherwise polite society, elites (progressives emphatically included) unselfconsciously belittle working-class whites. We hear talk of “trailer trash” in “flyover states” afflicted by “plumber’s butt” — open class insults that pass for wit. This condescension affects political campaigns, as in Hillary Clinton’s comment about “deplorables” and Barack Obama’s about people who “cling to guns or religion.”
…That’s the first step. The second is for Democrats to advocate an agenda attractive to low-income and working-class Americans of all races: creating good jobs for high school graduates.
I suspect Legal Insurrection was sent a copy of White Working People because the editors thought we might be receptive to making liberal causes more palatable to our audience. But I doubt many among our fans will enjoy culling through cherry-picked facts, astonishing over-generalizations, and references to winning against conservatives.
It’s as if the editors who sent us this book have never read our blog!
I might suggest the editors send the material to progressive leaders and their media minions, where it could do some good. However, leftists and the American press are so immersed in their nationwide orgy of rage and spite, it may be too late.
Bottom line: Save your money, and if you are interested in Williams’ perspective, read the linked posts above.DONATE
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