In less than a year, the presidency of Donald Trump has already left a profound impact on the divisiveness and disjunction that had been simmering just below the surface across the United States.
Both as a candidate and now president, Trump has promised a lot of things to a lot of people, particularly those he likes to describe as the “forgotten ones.” But the stories from people on the ground and in the various blue–collar communities across the nation often get lost among the bitter arguing and incredulity that have become standard in much of today’s mass media.
Taking a step back, a short documentary series called The Divided, by Glassbreaker Films and The Center for Investigative Reporting, is exploring the “hopes, fears and actions that followed the 2016 presidential election” by looking at several communities across the country to chart their advancement or stagnation since Trump’s election.
Supported by the Helen Gurley Brown Foundation to support women in documentary and investigative journalism, filmmakers spent a year traveling to places like West Virginia, to speak with religious leaders trying to secure safe spaces for refugees; southern Arizona to dive into the border wall issue, a Trump campaign promise; and the bayous of Louisiana, where the shrimping industry is being decimated by imports and environmental degradation.
Other features include two friends who travel the country to provide free legal aid to undocumented immigrants and coal industry layoffs in Wyoming.
The following video, titled Fought For, Forgotten, highlights a dilemma that many Trump supporters now face, as the president’s promises to “rebuild this country” increasingly ring hollow. View the entire series here.