Saturday, November 12, 2016

After Trump


     The unimaginable has happened.  Donald Trump, who ran a campaign based on bullying, bigotry, misogyny, half-truths and outright lies, will be making himself at home in our White House... the People's House.  The "basket" of deplorables that Hillary Clinton made reference to morphed into an eighteen wheeler truck.  Much was made of that label, "deplorable"... I don't doubt that many of Trump's  supporters are indeed white supremacists who are panicked at their diminished influence/control.  Many others are alt-right types willing to do whatever it takes to further a dangerous agenda.  "Some, I assume (yes, I'm quoting Trump), are good people..." likely motivated by genuine economic frustration and fear.  They're wondering what happened to their seat at the table.  What happened to their American Dream?
     It's hard to be sure what Trump's economic policies might entail, since he seemed to go to great lengths not to engage in a detailed discussion of the issues during the campaign.  If it wasn't "great", "huge", "tremendous" and didn't involve a wall, it was unlikely to be mentioned.  In any case, Trump has given no indication that he either understands or cares about income inequality.  Furthermore, he'd never do anything that wasn't in the best interest of his fellow one-percenters. 
     For Trump supporters then, this lack of any economic agenda only seems to leave racial and cultural resentments as their unifying doctrine.  Not much in the way of building a better America...
     One would have thought that given the slow-but-steady forward march of history we wouldn't be confronted by hatred, fear, and paranoia on this scale again... yet here we are.  We'll need to raise our voices to defend immigrants, Muslims, the millions of our fellow citizens who'll have their health insurance stripped away, the environment, Mitch McConnell's plan to turn the Supreme Court into a cluster of ultra-conservative tools... you name it.  We have our work cut out for us.  As much as it may be tempting to look toward a more progressive society (Canada), this is our country.
     We can take comfort in the realization that we're not alone.  In fact, we are the majority.  53% of us voted for someone other than Donald J. Trump. Even setting aside the votes cast for Gary Johnson and Jill Stein, Hillary Clinton won the popular vote (by a margin of at least1-2 million, depending on the estimates).  So, although Trump and his supporters would be appalled at having this word attached to them, they're a minority.
     Leading up to the election, Trump and his supporters whined for months about how unfair "the system" was.  They assured us the election was rigged.  Funny how all that talk vanished in the blink of an eye! 
     In the next few weeks the President-elect is scheduled to appear in court to face allegations of massive fraud (Trump "University") brought in a lawsuit.  Perhaps he won't even make it to the White House... Even if he does, we'll use the same system he derided and demeaned to take our country back.  God knows, we all deserve better... even James Comey. 

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