For most of the 20th century, if you were white in America, there was plenty of economic opportunities. Many people did not need to go to college to get a good job and have a good life. However, the economy has changed and many of those low-skill and medium-skill jobs have long gone overseas. This has left many towns and cities gutted and crumbling. You can’t explain Trump’s rise without seeing this as an integral of the modern American politic.
There is real fear among many Americans that while much of the rest of the country moves forward to new jobs in knowledge, technology, and services, many small and medium-sized towns are simply being left behind and the good paying jobs are no longer available. For many, even simply going to college is no longer enough. Internships and other skills building is required for the jobs available. Companies are no longer training workers, the workers must come ready-made to perform the entirety of the tasks required with as little training time as possible.
Modern economic conditions have people feeling left behind and PBS Newshour as the story: