Because democracy has spoken. Period.
No no no. No “but.”
No “But Hillary had the popular vote.”
No “But Trump will destroy America.”
No “People will be killed because of Trump.”
Trump was elected by democracy. Period.
In fact, I wonder if that’s what created President Trump. Our righteousness.
“Oh, we are more educated, informed, urban, modern, and fashionable. We know what’s good for you.”
Even after the election was concluded, there are many people who are convinced America elected the wrong president. Remember. There is no such thing as a country “electing a wrong president” because whoever is elected is, by definition, the right president. What you’re trying to say is “America wasn’t the country I thought it was, and it wants things I didn’t think it did.” What you’re thinking is “This isn’t the president that takes the country in the direction that I think is right.”
There is no such thing as a country “electing” a wrong president.
Sure, having everyone come together stronger is probably the better future for any country, but the country has the right to pick their own future. Even if that future is a complete destruction, it chooses.
What’s wrong with being righteous when you’re actually right? What’s wrong with telling bigots, hillbillies, rednecks, and white trash that the world has moved on, all our neighbours are equal, and we don’t leave anyone behind? Because, by doing that, we are not following our own rules. Because we aren’t treating them as neighbours with equal right to a vote and an opinion. Because we are treating them as someone who has been left behind. Because we are calling them names. Because we are acting just the way we accuse them of. Our “cause” being more moral (transgender protection, for instance) does not justify the way we treat them.
Trump activated them. Clinton ignored them. Those aren’t the only ways to treat them. We can reach out to them. We can have a conversation with them. We must have empathy.
For example. You’re an American born into a farming family. You all work from dawn to dusk. You talk about weather, crop, family, and football, but mostly you work a lot. Put food on the table and pay taxes. You don’t go to university because… well, it’s not something you do. Some years are really hard because of the unpredictable crop prices, rising fuel prices, pressure from urban folk about practices, and all the workers that rely on you. You work really hard. You’re tired, worn out, sore, but proud.
You’re a Cubs fan even though your family has lived in Kansas for generations because a Cubs hat is being passed down. You call African-Americans cotton pickers, and you think all immigrants are stealing your opportunities, because…well, that’s what you do. You just don’t know any other way. No one has come down there to show you how to be any other way.
Now wherever you go, you feel like you have to walk on eggshells because people yell at you for what you’re used to saying. At family gatherings, the kids that you sent to school in the city with your hard-earned money call you names like bigots and white trash. They tell you 25 different examples of why you are wrong.
But, still, no one sits you down and shows you empathy. “I see how frustrating it must be to suddenly find yourself caught between how you grew up and how people expect you to be.” No one sits down and teach you a different way. “Hey, did you know that black people saved your dad’s life in war?” “Hey, did you know that illegal immigrants pay more taxes than Americans?”
By that time, it’s like one of those abusive relationships where you try and try and try but your partner keeps picking on you. Nagging you. There is always something new. You are always wrong. You kind of know they are right… you do leave socks on the floor, wet towel on bed, didn’t reply to text, was late to dinner, and made a golf date without asking them. But, still, hearing about how wrong you are every day doesn’t make you proud. And you think you deserve to be proud as a tax-paying American citizen.
Wouldn’t you think of dating that other person who tells you that you’re perfect just the way you are? That was Trump.
Now, what can you do about it to steer the country in the direction you think (and know) to be better, safer, and stronger? Treat everyone with empathy and respect. Remember every incident you called someone names like “bigot,” “hillbillie,” “redneck,” and recognize those as discrimination and disrespect. The only way they will listen to you is if you first show them respect.
If you don’t think they deserve your respect – and if you are actually listing off the reasons why they don’t deserve your respect – we have to start this conversation at a whole different place.