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Hillbilly Shuffle: Don't Blame Appalachia For Trump


Hillbilly Shuffle: Don't Blame Appalachia For Trump

Jeff Biggers

The phenomenon of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, we’ve been told for months in the media, has been fueled by the coal-fired alienation and anger of the nation’s working-class whites. Appalachia, more than any other region, has been targeted as ground zero. And J.D.


It is good to point out all the positive activism in Appalachia - when I'm in southeastern Kentucky, I always tune in to the excellent WMMT-FM run by the organization Appalshop in Whitesburg. However, the whole premise that Trumps support comes from the dirt-poor is not correct. Polls and my own observations in Appalachia of where Trump" yard signs appear in my area have shown Trumps core of support are from households who look comfortably middle class, even upper middle class - nice house, 3-car garage, multiple cars pickup trucks, and ATV's.

I have no reason to disbelieve the stories that these seemingly comfortable people suffer high anxiety and uncertainty about their personal material conditions going forward, but I am baffled as to where all this anxiety is coming from - especially being as what Trump supporters are not worrying about the real things to worry about - war, injustice, climate change...

Yeah, I know - to a person, they all will say, "The 'liberals' are taxing me and my small business to death!" and usually proceed to claim some over-the-top amounts of tax they are paying - 60%, 70%, but if these taxes are such a burden, why are they not living in a shack then?


You comment is not even addressing article - but actually, the most overt racial discrimination in the USA can be found in Chicago, Boston and New York, I've seen it and Martin Luther King saw it.

At any rate, few black USAns can be found in the insular rural and small coal-town areas of E, Kentucky, West Virginia, Western Maryland and Pennsylvania, and unlike places like Philly or Boston where it is de-facto forbidden, interracial couples are often seen in places like Huntington, West Virginia or Johnstown, Pennsylvania

Your Neil Young really needs to update his old songs.


The old Confederate states have given us two things in this current election cycle.

  1. Most of the Trump supporters. Rednecks.
  2. A large black vote for Hillary and against Bernie. Rednecks.


What the hell would you, Canuck, know about Appalachian geography or culture? And no, the drive across West Virginia on I-79 and US-19 on your way from Toronto to you winter Florida home does not count.


Thanks for demonstrating the racism that lies just beneath the skin of a "Bernie bro"

The topic of this article was about the Appalachia coal regions. West Virginia, was a Union state. SE Ohio was a Union state, Kentucky was a neutral state. Western Pennsylvania was a union state, Western Maryland was a Neutral State. No confederate states there.


So you suffer from both Canadian chauvinism and the same west-coast chauvinism we have down here too.


WTF do YOU know, CANUCK? I live on the West coast, but was born in Appalachia. I know the absolute destruction of the economy there first-hand when I go back to visit family. Every 2-3 years I go back and it's 10 times worse than the last visit. And, by the way, the LAZIEST-ASS people (and MOST RACIST - never heard the N-word used more by any other group) I ever had the misfortune of working with were maritime CANADIANS. The second worst? In Calgary (where I had to work for 6 months - see, I actually KNOW about other parts of the world a-hole).

"Never been there and never will. Mainly because of the amount of lead flying around in the air but also because the smell of racism sickens me"

So, you don't even know what you're talking about. Just go on living in your isolated (and pretty much lilly-white population) western Canada. and spew out hatred for things you know NOTHING about.


Trolling from CANADA - you must REALLY be bored In your crude log cabin in the woods, eh?


Facts are facts.


Comment flagged for being classic trolling. Dear moderator, please ban this asshole.


Interesting background on the etymology of cracker..."In reference to a native of Florida or Georgia, however, it is sometimes used in a neutral or positive context or self-descriptively with pride"..."A 1783 pejorative use of "crackers" specifies men who "are descended from convicts that were transported from Great Britain to Virginia at different times, and inherit so much profligacy from their ancestors, that they are the most abandoned set of men on earth." [3] Benjamin Franklin, in his memoirs (1790), referred to "a race of runnagates and crackers, equally wild and savage as the Indians" who inhabit the "desert[ed] woods and mountains." https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cracker_(pejorative)


Buffalo Creek Disaster?


In 45 years of voting I heve never voted for a Republican, however I have observed first hand that urban arrogance in Murka has fulfilled the divide and conquer strategy the Democratic Party has fostered ever since the Democratic Leadership Council (DLC) was formed in 1985.


OK, I was thinking of Buffalo Creek - a Logan Co. WV coal refuse dam failure that killed 125 - becasue its 45th anniversary will be on February 26. I work in a MSHA group whose job is to prevent future ones. It is not an easy job considering all the shoddy engineering the mine's engineers still submit for our review.