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Trump has now personified Trumpism undisguised with cheers of the alt-right, the white nationalist, and the KKK as well as with false hopes of those less-than-equipped with a 21st century mindset.
The nation was conceived from a horizontal ideal that we are all born equal and endowed by the Creator with the same unalienable rights; Guthrie’s song emblematizes this horizontal ideal, which has galvanized many in building and expanding a horizontal America.
At the same time, conflicting interests and competing values, associated with race, creed, color and gender, have shaped a vertical and non-negotiable power structure, designed and implemented by winning and subsequently ruling groups.
While both claiming American values and interests, the question becomes: which one is the true and undistorted Americanism? president epitomizes what means to be an American and embodies what America is.
Any ism needs a larger-than-life figure to be the face and the voice of the system, the identifiable practice, and the movement in which that particular ism is embodied. He or she is a symbol, in a distinctive position to create an era and a culture.
Time and again, the status quo of the vertical power structure has been questioned, challenged, and destabilized by the horizontal America.
Since the beginning of the nation’s history, the paradox of the horizontal and the vertical has programed Americanism with inherent duality, conflict, interplay, peaceful or not-so-peaceful confrontations and negotiations.
National security has become undistinguishable from the security of those who endorse core values of the alt-right, the white nationalist, and the racist.
In disguise of Americanism, “America First” and “Make America Great Again” have made America more disjointed and more disconnected racially and culturally.
It is argued that disfigurement of Americanism comes from a disruptive and destructive interplay of the vertical and the horizontal in Trump’s America.
This land is your land, this land is my land From the California to the New York island From the Redwood Forest, to the gulf stream waters This land was made for you and me As I went walking that ribbon of highway I saw above me that endless skyway And saw below me that golden valley This land was made for you and me … When the American “Troubadour” Woody Guthrie composed the lyrics of “This Land Is Your Land” in 1940, he had just completed one of his major migrations, the trans-continental journey from California to New York, in search of job and shelter.