Recently, the Young Turks interviewed a young white millennial raised in the heart of America’s coal country, and what he had to say is straight out of the Republican Party’s worst nightmare.
Nic Smith describes himself as a “white trash hillbilly from the holler.” He’s a non-college educated white voter who works at Waffle House.
Smith joined a minimum wage protest outside of a fast food restaurant in Richmond, Virginia and spoke about the “dying” coal industry around where he grew up.
The young man explained how mechanization and other factors are contributing to the demise of an industry that has employed multiple generations of his family.
The Turks asked about claims from conservatives that immigration and diversity play a role in the demise of good paying jobs for whites in America.
Smith seemed disgusted by the notion. Smith said:
“Ain’t no damn immigrants stole a coal job. I’ll tell you that right now.”
“Even if they did. Would you really be blaming the immigrants or the people that hired them? The only reason they would hire an immigrant over an American citizen is if it benefits their wallets.
These people, that they’re not paying payroll taxes on, these people that they are paying below minimum wage. Things like that. Can ya really, put the blame on the immigrants in the first place, ya know?”
When asked if he was “persuaded” by President-elect Donald Trump’s promise to bring back the coal industry, Smith’s response was swift and brutal.
“Oh, hell no.”
“I know a lot of people that voted for him just because of that. I mean if you were to ask anybody in Dickenson County three or four years ago ‘What do ya think of Donald Trump?’ And they’d say, ‘well he’s a braying jackass Yankee who probably should have had his ass whooped a long time ago. Ya know? To be blunt.
He has said so many times ‘we’ll bring back every coal job, 100 percent of the coal jobs,’ that’s what he said. And these people are desperate to believe in something…”
Smith goes on to explain how the “Liberal media” mislabels most Trump voters in his area, thinking that they don’t understand or care about the dangers of coal.
He points out that the coal miners know first hand of the life-shortening costs of their business, but for many people, that industry is all that they have to survive on.
The Turks finally ask Smith his thoughts about on an interview they conducted with Alt-Right White Supremacists but before he could finish asking the question the self-described “hillbilly” could not contain his contempt.
“F*ck them, f*ck them man…sh*t..”
Elaborating a bit further, Smith went on to debunk the Alt-Right’s insidious propaganda that claims working white people don’t have the same social safety nets and benefits in America as whites in homogenous countries like Sweden because of diversity.
He said the reason why countries with a majority white population enjoy those programs is that they don’t spend billions on prisons and their military. He also mentioned how they tax the wealthy and regulate businesses.
The Democratic party needs to find young people like Smith and consider sponsoring and training them to become progressive leaders in their communities. This kid shouldn’t be wasting away at a Waffle House; he should be running for office.
Here’s another video of Smith discussing the everyday struggles black and white families share regarding welfare and fighting for a living wage.
Young people like Smith represent the bridge needed for progressive ideas to reach GOP-controlled areas. He knows the people of that area; he’s one of them, and with the right message he can do some serious damage to the Republican’s stranglehold over their hearts and minds.
Liberals need to challenge every county in the U.S. We have the better ideas and values; it’s time to take our message to the GOP’s base.