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Post Election Thoughts

November 18, 2016

Photo by John Novotny 

 

Last Tuesday I didn’t sleep. Instead I sat in front of my computer and

watched in horror as my country elected a president who was endorsed by the KKK.

I watched as state after state decided that keeping white men in power was more

important than protecting the lives and rights of millions of people, that Hillary

Clinton was more of a criminal because of an email scandal (that had been cleared

twice by the FBI), than Donald Trump was despite numerous accusations of sexual

assault, and an upcoming trial for fraud against Trump University. As this was

happening I received texts from friends of mine who feared for their safety. The day

after I walked into school to see a boy in a crisp white button down, khakis, and a

familiar red baseball cap making blowjob jokes to his freshman girlfriend. The

reality of the situation is that, by electing Donald Trump, we have taken a major step

back as a country.

 

I’m well aware of the fact that Hillary Clinton was not the perfect candidate (I

loved Bernie as much as the next person). However, it’s hard to deny the fact that

she was the most qualified candidate in the race as well as in recent years. As First

Lady she helped Bill Clinton push for health care reform, serving as a policy role on

the White House Staff. She was also a legislator for New York, and Secretary of State

under President Obama, among other things. Her loss is a bitter reminder to every

woman who has been passed over for a promotion or condescended to by a teacher

in favor of a less-qualified male peer.

 

Photo by John Novotny 

 

Donald Trump won on a platform based on white male fear. He won by

promising to build a wall along the U.S. border to Mexico (and make them pay for it),

to deport all of the 12 million undocumented immigrants in the country, and to hire

a special prosecutor to investigate Clinton. In electing him we are normalizing

sexual assault, and justifying racism. Just as scary though, are his Vice President’s

policies. Mike Pence supports conversion therapy, and is hell-bent on overturning

Roe v. Wade. The two of them together send a shiver down my spine in the worst

way imaginable.

 

This election was a shocking blow to just about every demographic except for

straight white men. Since the election there have been calls to “give Trump a

chance” and to come together to accept him as president. The last thing Trump’s

presidency will do is bring the country together. Rather, it will raise a generation of

warriors, of people so determined to fight for what we believe in that this kind of

situation will never happen again. So, yes. It is ok to cry about the fact that we now

have an orange for President. It’s ok to mourn the fact that we don’t know when we

will see a woman in the White House. It’s ok to be scared for the future of this

country. It’s ok to be scared for yourself and your friends. In fact, you have every

right to feel these things. I know I haven’t stopped feeling them since the election.

However, don’t let these feelings paralyze you. Rather, stand up. Protest, volunteer,

donate money, give someone a hug and tell them you love them despite what our

President-elect has been saying.

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