Is it hard being a Trump supporter? Do Trump supporters worry about harassment or discrimination when entering spaces that may be bipartisan or—gasp—liberal? Apparently, enough Trump supporters are seeking a safe space that a new app, “63red Safe,” has launched. The goal? To help pro-Trump conservatives find “safe” spaces, including restaurants and other businesses, where they won’t have to worry about being maligned for supporting Trump. Sigh.
The app, which you can find in the Apple store, has the following description: “Find great restaurants nearby, and see how expensive, how far away, and best of all, whether they are safe for conservatives!”
Basically: Yelp, but for people who wear MAGA hats. Users can rate businesses based on whether or not the owners “make political social media posts.” Oh, and whether or not customers can carry weapons.
The app also asks users questions like, “Does this business serve persons of every political belief?” and “Will this business protect its customers if they are attacked for political reasons?” Any guesses as to whether or not the app has a question about gender-neutral bathrooms? Owned by an immigrant? What about a woman of color?
Scott Wallace, the creator of the app, appeared on “Fox & Friends” on Monday to discuss his intentions with the app. “We wanted to make sure that people could let others know what restaurants may have a political bent,” he said. “We’re not looking to try and find restaurants that are ‘conservative’ or ‘pro-Trump.’ ”
The creator of an app described as "Yelp for conservatives" says that the aim is "to get politics out of local businesses [and] local restaurants," even though businesses can get marked unsafe for banning firearms. pic.twitter.com/1ITNgp0cXS
— Bobby Lewis (@revrrlewis) March 11, 2019
Anyone remember when White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders was told to leave The Red Hen in Lexington, Virginia? Her tweet about the incident touches on the same head-scratching logic that supports a Trump-friendly safe space; how can one talk about respect, when their platform is based on hate?
Last night I was told by the owner of Red Hen in Lexington, VA to leave because I work for @POTUS and I politely left. Her actions say far more about her than about me. I always do my best to treat people, including those I disagree with, respectfully and will continue to do so
— Sarah Sanders (@PressSec) June 23, 2018
The Red Hen, for example, is now labeled “unsafe” on the app, as reported by the Daily Beast.
In an interview with the Daily Beast, Wallace alleged that he believes Trump supporters are likely to be targeted by “socialist good squads.”
“I think Antifa was nothing compared between now and what’s coming in 2020,” he explained. “And I’m deeply concerned.”
“We want businesses to understand that there’s no money in politics,” Wallace continued. “We want to make sure everyone’s safe out there.” Again: Who exactly does he mean when he talks about “everyone”?
There’s a lot to unpack here. Conservatives are notorious for mocking “safe spaces,” making this ironic to begin with. Unfortunately, it’s a safe bet that “everyone” doesn’t actually apply to everyone. While trans people are legitimately worried about being able to safely use the bathroom, and same-sex couples are in fear of being attacked, and people of color fear having the cops called on them for simply existing…. Trump supporters are worried about “socialist good squads.”
Since Trump’s presidency started, hate crimes based on sexual orientation, race, and religion have gone up. Imagine the cognitive dissonance it takes to support a demigod who preaches hate speech, only to want a safe space to wear a red MAGA hat of your own?
Wallace notes that “This is not yet another social network,” referring to the enormous failure of Donald Date, a dating app for Trump-supporters. Almost immediately after its launch, the app suffered from a huge data leak. If this were satire, it would feel too on the nose.