In a poor city in Wisconsin, voting doesn’t much matter

It doesn’t matter to a lot of people who was elected president two weeks ago. That is the very definition of hopelessness.

“I don’t feel bad,” a barber in Milwaukee tells the New York Times about his decision not to vote. “Milwaukee is tired. Both of them were terrible. They never do anything for us anyway.”

The Times dropped in on a Milwaukee neighborhood to find out whether people who didn’t vote now wish they had. It found that many people are just fine with sitting the election out.

The drop in voter turnout from 2012 to 2016 in the five poorest districts in the city was much greater than the drop in the prosperous ones, accounting for the lowest voter turnout in the city in 16 years.

“He’s going to mess with us on some racist level,” said Otis Jackson, 45, a barber who did not vote. “He’s already appointed a known racist,” he said, referring to Stephen K. Bannon, Mr. Trump’s chief strategist and the former head of Breitbart News, which has been denounced as a white nationalist hate site.

With so many people sitting in his chair over the years, Mr. Fleming has developed a keen sense of where society is headed. But now he is stumped.

“This was a weird election,” he said, holding a set of clippers and looking pensive. “You can’t tell what’s on people’s minds. There are less cars out there. No one wants to come out. No one knows what comes next.”

And in a Milwaukee neighborhood, few were interested in having any say in it.