So, President-elect Donald Trump has happened.
I’m not thrilled about it. I’m not alone, of course.
I’ve been reading way, way too much in the wake. I should probably stop. Of all of it, this article by David Wong was a favorite:
So yeah, be upset for as long as you want. Get drunk. Do whatever you have to do. After that, I want you to sober up, splash water on your face, and consider some facts:
Gay marriage has overwhelming support nationwide – 55 percent to 37 percent against.
Legal abortion is favored by 56 percent, with 41 percent opposed.
The vast majority of the population supports background checks for gun buyers – up to 90 percent in some polls.
A majority of Americans support some kind of universal health care, 58 percent to 37 percent.
64 percent of Americans are worried about global warming. Only 36 percent are not.
And – get this – Americans overwhelmingly agree that immigration helps the country more than it hurts, by a 59 percent to 33 percent margin.
Your country didn’t go anywhere. It’s right here where you left it. America is nothing more than a big ol’ collection of people, and those people are more diverse and progressive than they have ever been. That train won’t be stopped. Donald Trump’s supporters are by and large an aging and shrinking demographic.
To everyone out there who is in rightful fear of the racist fuckwits that will feel empowered by a President Trump: You are not alone out there. Also, I am sorry. I don’t think I did enough.
I think it’ll take a while to know for sure how he won.
I am suspicious of anyone that offers the one true reason for the loss, be it latent racism or overt racism or half the country is actually Nazis or economic populism or choice of candidate or Russians or spineless mainstream Republicans or voter suppression or media failings or Facebook news bubbles. It’s probably all of those things.
And it was probably somewhat inexplicable:
I don’t have a model of the American people that accounts for electing someone like Trump. He’s done too many things, said too many things, tweeted too many things that would typically be disqualifying in American politics. Remember when Mitt Romney was mocked for his car elevator? Trump has a house covered in gold. Remember when John Kerry was assailed for supposedly insulting the military by the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth? Trump slandered war heroes and Gold Star parents despite getting repeated deferments from Vietnam. Remember when John McCain was dismissed for seeming ill-informed and out of touch amid the financial crisis? Trump doesn’t know how NATO works or what the nuclear triad is.
Much has been written about the role that working-class whites played in electing Trump, and I agree that more empathy and understanding of their particular troubles is worthwhile.
Trump told them a hell of a better story than Clinton, I think that’s clear.
I don’t resent working class folks for wanting “change”—hell, many of them voted for Obama—or demanding that someone pay attention. Who doesn’t want to be heard? I get it.
It’s, err, interesting that the new hero of the rural working class is a New York “elite” who lives in a gold-plated penthouse.
It sucks that Donald Trump is a Klan-approved, misogynistic, congenital liar, and a lot of folks were willing to look past that.
Well, if you voted for Trump but abhor much of what he said: you own it now. I trust that you’ll turn against Donald Trump when he fails you.
That said, I think it’s ridiculous that there’s so much hand-wringing over a swing of, let’s say, 100,000 people in the Rust Belt when, as of this writing, Hillary Clinton received 800,000 more votes than Donald Trump.
A majority of this country rejected Donald Trump, but he’s still President-elect.
I accept that he won by the rules that are in place right now.
But! Twice in the last 16 years, the person who received the most votes is not president. As a friend put it, “I’ve voted in 5 elections for 4 people. Of those 4, 3 won the popular vote, but only 1 became president.”
It’s utter nonsense. Burn the Electoral College to the ground.
I have only lived in “swing states” and I want the idea of swing states to die in a fire. Everyone’s vote—from coast to Kansas, from city to suburb, from Montana to Maine—should be actually equal when it comes to electing our president.
I reject this rumbling that we owe Donald Trump an open mind and should hope for his success.
If this were, I dunno, Rubio or Kasich or [shudders] Cruz, I might be less hostile. I would disagree with them on just about everything, but I accept that there’s a natural ebb and flow to who’s running the country in a 2-party system.
But Donald Trump is not ordinary: he’s openly racist; he has suggested that he would order the military to commit war crimes; he advocates religious litmus tests; he believes global warming is a hoax; he has threatened the press and his political enemies.
Believe me, I want to believe it won’t be so bad. That with the eyes of history and the weight of running the country on him that’ll he’ll cool his authoritarian jets.
However, I do not have a lot of faith that Trump will do zero of the things he has promised.
Be ready: do not accept attempts to rationalize or explain away Trump’s rhetoric, or his promises. Stay outraged. Do not compromise.
“But this should be a time of national healing!”
Nah. 8 years ago the entire Republican party decided their platform, in its entirety, was “not Obama.” I will be extending President Trump the same courtesy.
Man, I’m going to miss the Obamas.
I take some solace that, in all likelihood, the next four years are going to be miserable for Donald Trump:
He’s an entertainer and an attention whore, not a public servant. He wants to be on TV and in front of crowds, not actually working a difficult, grueling, stressful job he can’t opt out of. He’s going to have to sit through SO many meetings, be forced to read SO many briefings, get shoehorned into serious business all day every day, without crowds to perform for, and he’s going to hate Every. Single. Minute.
Our job is to make his life all the more goddamn miserable.
A deep and broad movement that surpasses the 90s “culture wars” and the (ultimately futile) liberal reaction to the War on Terror. It can be hard to put your finger on exactly what you fear most about the rise of Donald Trump: the racism? The sexism? The xenophobia? The profoundly dangerous lack of judgment? We fear all of these things. What this movement will ultimately unite against, though, is the rise of an American strongman. We Americans have always fancied ourselves to be superior to the banana republics and quasi-dictatorships that we often helped create; now, we are offered a chance to prove it. If we do not wish to be the sort of nation that allows itself to be run by a strongman, then the movement starts now.
Trump doesn’t seem to like protests, so get out there (peacefully!) when he starts doing stuff that you disapprove of. Media coverage of protesters is media coverage that is not on his moldy-orange-that-you-left-in-the–back-of-the-fridge-for–8-months face.
Support the press. Trump loathes the press when they’re not doing exactly what he wants! Maybe pay for online news, if you can? At least read actual news! You can get a free online subscription to the Washington Post for free if you have a
.mil email address.
Call or write your representatives, particularly at their district offices. Remind them, among other things, that unchecked executive power, regardless of who wields it can get much worse. Someone with power telling Trump he can’t just do whatever he wants will really piss him off.
If you can, give money to organizations that have pledged to fight Trump or charities will help people who are probably going to need it. That’ll annoy and perplex Donald Trump, a man who believes that charitable giving is for buying large portraits of himself and settling his own lawsuits. I plan on giving to several of these, in addition to local charities.
There’s more, of course. I’m ready.