|White and proud of it. Freedom ain't free. Jesus is watching.|
McCrummen paints a picture of people of this western Iowa town resembling a composite of Twilight Zone episodes, waking up to discover white supremacists reign in rural America, a psychopath has been elected to the presidency and a white-power party controls Congress.
Russell [Paulson] listened; he had known Walt [Miller]. At the age of 80, he knew almost everyone in Kiron, a town of 229 people, one of whom is U.S. Rep. Steve King, who has a house on the edge of town. Russell knew King, too, knew that he was the sort of person always stirring controversy, often by raging against what he called 'cultural suicide by demographic transformation.' More recently, King had said that 'we can’t restore our civilization with somebody else’s babies,' a comment embraced by prominent white supremacists and widely condemned around the country as demonizing Latino and other non-European immigrants.
There was little controversy across King’s district, though, a swath of rural America made up of tiny towns with tiny, aging white populations that routinely elected King with more than 70 percent of the vote. In Kiron, people brushed it off as King being King, a man they all knew, expressing a plain truth they all understood: The white population was shrinking, and towns like theirs were vanishing, with the few exceptions being places such as Denison, a pork-processing town 20 minutes down the highway where population growth was being driven by immigrants from Mexico and Central America.
No, fretting about immigrants blocking restoration of civilization stirs little controversy in the Kirons of America.
Nor among the know-nothings in Kenosha, Kiron's cultural neighbor to the northeast.
Recall the Chris Hayes Show broadcast from Kenosha in December as Bernie Sanders patiently listened and took questions from confused Trump voters.
Reports Josh Feldaman in Mediaite from Dec. 2016:
During another part of the town hall, a Muslim woman spoke up about Trump’s inflammatory rhetoric about a Muslims and immigrants on the campaign trail.
The reaction from the Trump voters to the Muslim ban was to say 1) they don’t want that to happen and 2) it won’t happen because either Trump didn’t mean it or Congress would never allow something like that.
American political culture is going to have to come to grips with the fact that the Kirons and Kenoshas are full of people for whom bigotry, racism and hate are not disqualifying in candidates for public office, and the impolitic fact that Trump voters are kind-of stupid.
Each new generation comes of age, learning to blame black, brown, immigrant and the flavor of the month for whatever ails white people.
Trump is due in Kenosha today.
No doubt he'll offer dialogue with the natives as edifying as the conversations at the Quik Mart in Kiron, Iowa: What happened to America? Black, browns and Muslims did it.