Harlem — and Much of Black America — has Decided to Give President Trump a Chance

This may come as a shock to the political left, but not everyone who opposed Donald Trump is as angry or despondent as the demonstrators who grabbed headlines nationwide over the past week or the pundits who intellectualized the Democratic hissy fit.

On Monday I took a stroll around New York City’s Harlem neighborhood and asked a couple of dozen black residents to respond to the election and subsequent protests. I didn’t come across any Trump voters—or at least any who admitted it—but many told me they had expected Hillary Clinton’s defeat. No one thought it was the end of the world.

“Hillary wasn’t strong enough. She didn’t fight enough,” said a gentleman leaving a drugstore, who introduced himself as Pace. “People saw her as weak and thought she’d be weak in the White House.” He also faulted Mrs. Clinton’s message. “She was talking about what she did in other countries as secretary of state. I can understand the situation around the world, but we live here.” Mr. Trump, in contrast, “was talking about the people who live here—the poor, the veterans.”

When I asked Pace, who retired from a job in dress manufacturing several years ago, if he thought Mr. Trump would ever win him over, he responded: “He said he’d protect Medicare. I can go along with that. He said he’d get rid of the Bloods and the Crips and the gangs—get them out of here. I like that. If he does those two things, he’s my man.”

At a nearby hair salon, the proprietor, a 30-something West African woman who asked me not to use her name, said Mrs. Clinton lost because the country “didn’t want a female president, wasn’t ready for it.” Still, she’s optimistic about a Trump administration. “I think things will be different in a good way. He might surprise us. I don’t think he’s a bad person. It’s just the way he talks. He was real and people like that. I don’t think he’ll do the really crazy things like deporting everybody.”

Derrick, an off-duty police officer, told me that he considers Mr. Trump a con artist who tricked people into voting for him and won’t come through, especially on his promise to bring back manufacturing jobs. “But I’ll give him this,” he said. “She was not talking about securing this country, and that’s what he was talking about. People are watching people get blown up by these terrorists, and they’re scared, and she was talking about an open border. She didn’t emphasize scrutinizing the people who are coming in, and he did.”

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Wall Street Journal