More than any other issue, the 2016 election will be a referendum on political correctness. And in America, how you feel about PC culture now largely depends on where you live.

In the prosperous coastal cities it's the benchmark of a civilized discussion, but out in the heartland it's increasingly seen as a blunt instrument used to silence dissenting opinions that the elites don't like.

More than any other candidate, Donald Trump has recognized and exploited this growing town and country division. That's why he was the first to un-muzzle himself, eliciting howls of protest but winning supporters in the same breath. Trump was the first to understand the sheer potency of the division between the burghers and the boondocks and ride it all the way to the nomination.

There's clearly something going on out in the country that the Ivy League educated Republican establishment failed to grasp and then critically failed to control. There's a national moment of pushback, an appetite for a restoration of balance and power, that's being fueled by grievance and anger and economic disparity and that could very well go the whole way in November.

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Ask yourself how much has the country changed in the last eight years? Because the truth is how you answer that question in June will say a lot about who you'll pull the lever for in the presidential election in November.

If you see the last two Obama terms as offering modest improvements in the lives of most Americans, including some long deferred but important gains for minority communities that have been traditionally overlooked, you're probably a Hillary Clinton supporter.

But if the surprise of seeing the last name Barack Obama after seeing three centuries of predominantly white Anglo Saxon ones like George Bush and Bill Clinton hasn't worn off, if you see a gain for others as a loss for yourself, if the tide that's rising makes no distinction over which boats it lifts, you may be looking at Donald Trump to roll back some of this so-called progress and restore you to your traditional position, at or toward the top.

It's becoming clearer what the basic bargains of the 2016 election will be, and it's becoming clearer which ones are appealing to the mass of voters.

Trump has arrived in his De Lorean to take us all back to the future, America circa 1955, where he has made it plain, conservative white voters will cast the deciding votes and minorities will take a back seat, and if they're undocumented, they will face deportation proceedings. All 12 million of them. Then we'll build a wall to keep them out.

It cannot be controversial to say that Trump's pitch has been tilted at conservative white voters because he has made that point explicit on multiple occasions. Talk of enforced mass deportations and a ban on Muslim immigration isn't exactly laying out the welcome mat to minorities, is it?

Trump understands the exclusion of working class conservative white voters from polite discourse because he has felt the sting of that exclusion himself. A plutocrat that other plutocrats avoid, he's not invited to the best parties or seen in the politest circles, where his flashy presence would be abhorred.

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Millionaire vulgarians – and Trump is their poster boy – spend much more time talking to their chauffeurs and golf caddies and butlers because more than other millionaires. They're on their own a lot.

This is where The Donald first learned about the deepening hatred for political correctness. This is probably where he understood his once in a lifetime opportunity to be the standard bearer of the fight against it.

Electing a black man to the highest office in the land sent out a shockwave in 2008 that is rippling back in 2016. Repealing Don't Ask, Don't Tell and watching as the Supreme Court that backed marriage equality was a foundational shift that has inspired pushback now.

Many of us apparently don't care that Obama staved off a depression and improved the economy. Many of us don't care that he successfully created the Affordable Care Act or that he killed Osama Bin Laden and ended the Iraq war.

Instead, many of us are deeply aggrieved that we can't say exactly what we like, the way we used to without censure, without other people tut-tutting now and making us feel like social pariahs.

Liberals have failed to recognize just how angry conservative voters are that for eight years they have had to make room for opinions that differ from their own, or that their traditional position at the top of the social totem poll is suddenly contested, or that the threat of sanctions against them for expressing non-PC views enrages them.

But Donald Trump does, and he has bet his entire campaign on this well of hidden anger. Not only does he recognize it, he shares it.

And it will be a far-reaching disaster for our country because that means his presidency will be one of historic division, strife and authoritarian excess.

The Donald doesn't concern himself with these details, though. Details are for losers. There is only one result that interests him and that's clearly going well because at the moment Trump is winning.

Republican nominee Donald Trump.