Some Trump followers say they feel maligned because of their conservative views in the Democratic-leaning districts of Virginia, Wisconsin, and other states. They are now banding together for unity in convoys. Here’s what a Trump train ride looks like-and what it means to the country.
It’s the time of elections, and the supporters are out with full swing to support their President. The followers of Trump are leaving no stone unturned to bring him back on the throne and make him win. In his Jeep, a Wrangler covered in Trump flags, Scott Pio coasts through a neighborhood in northern Virginia on a recent Sunday. He waves at two ladies who are talking in the front yard dressed in tank tops. They’re giving him a rough look. Pio, a software engineer, aged 36, is hardly shocked. The President also comes here on weekends to play golf at his course, Trump Global, and progressive activists gather to protest his policies in front of his entrance. A Trump supporter like Pio gets a cold welcome here in this Democratic-leaning part of Virginia.
A few years ago, JuliBriskman, one of the Democratic activists gathered at the President’s club entrance, became famous for making an obscene gesture at the presidential motorcade. She is now an elected county official, a role she partially owes to her newly discovered fame. Pio learned about Briskman when, about a year ago, he moved to the city. Now he’s leading a caravan of flag-draped vehicles, jeeps, and big-wheelers, heading up and down the street in front of the golf club. As it is also called, the Trump train serves as a counterbalance to Briskman and the Democratic protestors’ actions. I’m tired of bringing our President down, says Pio, explaining why he wanted to coordinate the convoy, and I’m tired of the disrespect.
Pioh says that he is not a politician, but he is a follower and supporter of Trump. People voted for him and made him win. It was there choice, then why are they against him now? Pio likes the President’s deregulation efforts — the elimination of business restrictions — and his immigration policies, especially the US-Mexico border wall. Similar pro-Trump convoys exist throughout the US. The processions in liberal enclaves such as Sterling; Eau Claire, Wisconsin; and McAllen, Texas, roll along highways and rocky paths. The convoys’ citizens do not see the President’s motorcade in many of the cities as they do in Sterling. But they are still strongly and explicitly expressing their support.
The thought of Trump 2020 flags on trucks for many people evokes Portland’s traumatic pictures last month when Trump supporters clashed with liberals in a caravan. Their love for the President and their feeling of being oppressed within their societies unite the convoys’ individuals. Those who identify themselves as the presidential base drive the processions. According to a survey, as a demographic group, the President’s base is white men and women who earn relatively high incomes but are less likely than Democratic voters to have a college degree. According to a history professor at the University of Oklahoma in Norman, many of these conservatives claim that Democratic elites look down on them because they are more religious and they are interested in weapons.
We see Trump, and he will persuade them that the elites are contemptuous. In Washington, Trump complains about how poorly he is handled and praises his foundation, the forgotten man, and the forgotten woman. However, his poll numbers are dropping, and his followers are worried about his destiny and their own. These guys fear that their economic and political birthright is slipping away, says Jefferson Cowie. He is a professor of history at Nashville’s Vanderbilt University. He was standing next to his big rig, a 1980 model with a Trump flag that had broken down across from the President’s golf club (‘power-steering issues’). Cole was out of action for a moment, and he demonstrated his support for the convoy with a ring.
The convoys create unity among Trump supporters, a group of individuals who identify themselves as the common man. On a recent Sunday, one of them, Lee Jackson Shockey, 73, was sitting behind the wheel of a pick-up truck. He says Trump hears them in a way few political leaders do. Shockey grew up in Virginia and is the son of a hog farmer, and works as an accountant. I listen to President Trump on TV a lot of times. He says that a hunter who was raised around weapons likes how the President stands up for the Second Amendment, which guarantees the right to own guns. A retired fire marshal in ’79 Kenworth, one of the truckers, Mike Taylor, 62, says that Trump stands up for the nation and its workers: He stopped taking second or third seats in other countries, specifically China.
Progressive demonstrators are holding their rally on a sidewalk just yards away. They carry posters that condemn the President as a Democracy Killer and wear T-shirts emblazoned with Joe Biden, the Democratic presidential candidate, and Kamala Harris, his running mate. He says: The flag covers me and protects me too. The flag blocks the flying debris. It’s fixed with knots he learned while growing up in Florida as an Eagle Scout. Knot-tying, it turns out, is a beneficial ability for the leader of a convoy. The air smells like pine needles and hand sanitizer in a nearby parking lot, and people scream out over the noise like four-cylinder engines. They are instructed by Pio to keep an eye on their pro-Trump blue-and-red flags.
We’ve got to defend them, he says, adding that occasionally radical leftists pull them down: Last time they threw them into the woods. The President leaves the club in the afternoon, and people start to go home. Pio seems happy to focus on the event: It was great. He walks along the side of the road, picking up signs. It is uncertain about the election results and the fate of the President and his base. In the meantime, Pio is preparing another convoy for next week.