Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Election 2016 - The Aftermath

It’s the day after the election, and my spirit is crushed. As I watched the results last night, first in disbelief but still hoping, then in complete horror, I couldn’t wrap my head around a country that elected a reality TV star who is a bully, a bigot, a xenophobe, a homophobe, an Islamophobe, and a sexual predator to be our next president. A man whose scorecard on Politifact had more lies than all the other candidates combined. A man whose grasp of foreign policy is on par with a 4th grader. A man who is in the pocket of a Russian dictator. A man who doesn’t see why we can’t just nuke our enemies.

I know that a lot of people voted for him because he claims to be pro-life (as in anti-abortion.) That remains to be seen, but regardless of his actions in this area, if you voted for Trump - for whatever reason - you voted in favor of racism, in favor of sexism, in favor of religious hatred. You can’t compartmentalize your support. Your vote elected a man who wants to, at the very minimum, force all Muslim CITIZENS to register with the government, and who may very well round them up and incarcerate them as we did to the Japanese during WWII - or even deport them! Your vote elected a man whose vice president signed a law that would make it a crime for homosexuals to even apply for a marriage license, and who believes homosexuality can be “cured” by electro-shock therapy. You voted for gay and trans kids to once again be bullied and abused and reviled. You voted to enable the KKK and American Nazi party to be legitimized and spurred to action, knowing the government will look away as they burn black churches and beat and kill people of color. You voted to take away the marriages of my gay friends. You voted for people who, on election night, chanted, “We hate Muslims, we hate blacks, we are taking our country back.” You voted for pollution, because Trump wants to enable all pipelines and ALL drilling and mining (including in our National Parks.) You voted to deny medical care to millions of people. You can’t say, “I’m not in favor of those things!” because whether you like it or not, your candidate and his supporters ARE. And you enabled all of it. 

I am so angry right now, that I can’t even comprehend how to move forward. I know that we will have to come together and fight for what is right, and even reach out to Trump supporters to understand what drives them. But right now I can’t. I am so angry at those who voted for Trump, because they have unleashed a monster. Because the GOP also controls Congress, there will be no “checks and balances” on Trump. He can run roughshod over the Constitution and get away with it.

I’m terrified. Terrified for my black friends, my Latino friends, my Muslim friends, my gay friends, my sick and disabled friends. I’m terrified for myself, as a person with disabilities. 

And I’m dismayed. Dismayed that so many people - some of whom I called friends - chose to elect a hateful, bigoted sex predator because he was the “lesser” evil. I have unfriended people on Facebook, finally, because seeing their posts made me sick, knowing that they don’t care about my gay friends, my black friends, my Muslim friends, my Latino friends. This is not a political difference - this is a fundamental moral and ethical divide. How can I call someone a friend who wants to deny the civil rights of my other friends? Because - let me make this clear again - a vote for Trump was a vote for all those things: bigotry, racism, homophobia, Islamophobia. 

As a Christian, I know I should have hope, that I should trust that “God is in control.” But right now I’m struggling even with that. I’m too angry and hurt and dismayed to hope. I fear for our nation and the world. God help us all.