Ok, I've had a few days to think about the election.
To anyone who says it's going to be ok - maybe, but I doubt it. Part of the fear is having no idea what Trump will actually do since almost everything he says is a lie, but a bigger part is knowing that if at this point he decides to go full fascist1
there is no one that is going to stop him, and so far he appears to be following in Mussolini's footsteps.
I've seen a lot of posts pointing blame. Third party voters are not to blame, about 2% of the electorate votes third party every election, and despite the added press they got this time around, they did not get significantly more votes - there's no reason to think those voters would vote anything other than third party. The electoral college is not to blame, our presidential elections have never been a straight popular vote and both sides know the rules our elections operate under - at any rate the electoral college is not going anywhere. It boils down to we lost because we didn't convince enough voters that electing a racist, sexist, fascist asshole with poor impulse control was a monumentally bad idea. That should have been an easy sell, but Trump proved the better salesman.
I think a big part of that failure is that we don't talk to people that don't already agree with us. I've seen a lot of people asking for anyone who voted for Trump to leave their lives, I think that's a mistake. We need to convince more folks. It's hard to convince anyone that fear and anger aren't the answers or that immigrants and minorities are not the causes of their troubles if we don't talk. I refuse to tar all Trump supporters with his sins. I don't think most of them are really Trump fans, but they feared Clinton more, or just wanted to send a "fuck you" to Washington. I think they made a big mistake, but they're never going to see that if they are ostracized. Note this is not a call for unity (fuck appeasement) or a call to ignore bigotry, it absolutely should be called out whenever we see it - and if Trump supporters want us to believe they're not all bigots they need to join us in denouncing it. You don't need to be friends, this is simply a call to keep the lines of communication open2 3
, even with people who disrespect you, because if we don't, how is that ever going to change? Some of my friends are literally in fear for their lives, either because the ACA could be repealed and they'd be denied health care, or from hate crimes from bigots that feel they don't have to hide any longer (a lot of specific incidents being passed around on facebook are false, but yes this is happening
). Trump supporters need to know this, they need to see and hear about the consequences of their votes.
What to do next? Those of us with privilege enough to do so should help protect those most likely to bear the brunt of Trump's presidency, give to organizations that help immigrants, minorities, and women; support their businesses, bear witness and help if they're attacked. Don't be silent. To that end know that my house is a safe haven to anyone that should need it. Watch this administration, don't let our rights disappear without notice, a free press will likely be one of the first to go
. Hope that none of this will prove necessary, but prepare in case it is. 1
I'm not using fascist as an insult here, if you don't know what fascism actually is I suggest you read up on it
, because that is what we are facing. 2
oh lord, I'm agreeing with Glenn Beck, shoot me now.3
and I know we need our safe spaces too, I'm not saying every channel should be open, just that if you close your bubble completely, no one will hear you.