In a word, no.
People who vote for Trump care about racism, and to a lesser extent, misogyny over *any other issue*.
There’s a movement among some liberal white folks (even our beloved wandsci) to empathize with these jerks. They’re poor. They’re seeing privileges stripped away. They’re not used to being so close to the bottom. They’re uneducated. They’re scared and don’t know any better. We should try to understand their point of view. That’s the argument.
First, although the media narrative is an economic one, it’s not actually true. White Trump voters are better off than the average American. It is true that they’re generally not college educated. But that’s on them. They’re making plenty of money without the fancy degree that they could still get if they wanted.
Second, even if the media narrative were true, which it isn’t, that’s still no excuse to be racist.
Racism is deplorable. As the ladies on the Here to make friends bachelor podcast note, plenty of people have bad things happen to them and don’t become assholes. Your reaction to hardship or tragedy doesn’t have to be voting against your economic interests so that you can feel superior to someone with a different skin color.
There’s no point in trying to empathize with racists anymore than there’s a point in trying to empathize with dangerously misogynistic Chad on the Bachelor franchise. Empathy will not change their behavior. Shaming might. More likely these hardcore racists are just lost to humanity and will either someday see the light or they will die bitter horrible people. And that’s ok. The importance of shaming is not to change their beliefs. Shaming does two things. First, it changes the behavior of the bulk of these horrible people because it forces them to watch what they say and how they act, so it is harder to hurt minorities. Second, it shows that bulk of easily-led people that casual racism is not cool and tilts them for good over evil, which means they too are less likely to commit acts of overt racism.
Empathy has no place. These people are racist. Their behavior is deplorable. They should be ashamed of themselves. We should shame them. This behavior has no place in mainstream society and if it can’t be removed entirely, it should be treated as the abomination that it is. Let them dress up in their costumes and play their stupid games by themselves where we can laugh at them as losers who can’t get past 1865. But when their behavior starts affecting normal people, and when it starts having a negative effect on people who are already discriminated against, that’s when any residual caring about their racist fee-fees should disappear. They are bad people with bad beliefs and hopefully one day their children will escape and see how much better the world can be without their hate.