As part of last week's package on the election of Donald Trump, we asked journalist Troy Herring to talk to some Trump supporters in his native Wayne County. His story, "Trump's America," featured several interviews that hinted at an undercurrent of racism. Several Trump supporters took umbrage.
"More of the same from the left: creating a totally bogus narrative to fit their increasingly radical hate agenda," writes UNCconservative. "I've seen this story one hundred times on CNN or read it in The Washington Post. Here is how it goes down: Little Johnny goes off to local university. Gets indoctrinated by the left. Gets his journalism degree. Thinks he is smarter than everyone else. Arrogantly writes hate-filled hit pieces. Has wine and cheese with his leftist friends. Feels holier than thou. Loses an election. More apoplectic hit pieces. Vicious cycle. The left is going to continue to hate those not like them. We are all ignorant hicks in their eyes. Can't change them. Drain the swamp."
Elizabeth Prior believes the writer should leave the South: "Mr. Herring, you, sir, are a pompous ass. While Wayne County is not my favorite place on the planet, there are many positive qualities of Southern, rural Americans that have obviously been wasted on you. You seem to have found some degree of career success for yourself. So, if you find the rural South so offensive, why don't you get the hell out and go live among some hypocritical, liberal Yankees, where you would obviously fit in much better? I guess you wouldn't be able to find anyone to judge and demean with your so-called journalism."
"How did it feel to trash your hometown?" asks Ann Sullivan, vice chairwoman of the local Republican Party. "In Wayne County, I have not seen one single act of racism! I guess you missed all of the acts of kindness before, during, and after Hurricane Matthew and the floods that occurred after it. I can tell you everyone worked side by side and offered housing, food, and shelter for them and their pets. If that is what you call racist, you have a lot to learn, especially about your home county."
(Sullivan also contends that there are some comments attributed to her in the story that she did not say, though she did not offer specifics.)
"I grew up in the rural South," counters mx1010, "and I can say that I've known many people just like [those profiled in this story], or probably even worse. These are the kinds of people you don't want to run into if you are the slightest bit 'different.' They will attack your character in any way they can formulate with their shortsighted perspectives and attempt to discredit any confidence you show them."
"It's all about racism, white privilege, anti-intellectualism, fear of change (as well as of outsiders who support change and hold different ideas), and resentment of others who are educated and choose to use and apply that education to better themselves," writes Mike Voiland. "One truly has to wonder if [Joseph] Mozingo's belief that making America great again by going back to 'the beginning' means going back to America's origin sin of white-over-black as the natural order of things, including treating blacks as inanimate chattel and being less than human."