So far I have not seen any reason to hope for anything good from trump on any of the issues I care about. I have received sympathy from friends on my feelings of devastation. I have heard encouraging words about what he will do for our economy – none of which I believe will come to pass. Mostly, I feel that his election is a total rejection of everything I hold dear. I wrote an email expressing my thoughts, and I am posting it here. I hope that I can retract much of this in the future – but I doubt it. I DO appreciate the efforts of my friends. Those efforts have made me feel appreciated. But nothing is assuaging my deep sorrow and fear. Below is part of my reply to one of these good friends.
I am ABSOLUTELY opposed to violence in demonstrations. I am from a police family and understand the danger they are in. On the other hand there have been blatant abuses. Like the man in Staten Island who was suffocated after being approached for an extremely minor offense, tackled by multiple police, and ultimately killed by that tackle in spite of the man pleading over and over, ” I can’t breathe”.
I DO feel the pain of the demonstrators acutely. I have seen many examples of some trump supporters who feel empowered now to do vicious things. Rainbow flags are being burned here in Rochester, students in a high school calling other students niggers and cotton pickers and more. I am close friends with several of my LGBT former students and a relative who is a gay man planning to marry the man he loves. They are devastated and afraid. Meanwhile I have no words to comfort them except perhaps to tell them to channel their pain, anger and understandable fear into positive and peaceful action by joining respected and supportive activist groups. But I cannot deny their fear. As a woman I feel that fear and pain myself. As I said in my blog, the thing that hurts my heart the most is that we now have a president who thinks of me and my daughter as lesser beings.
I keep reaching out to ask for specific things that trump might do to better the lives of minorities, the disabled, LGBT people, poor people struggling with medical bills, and women….not to mention our first amendment rights which I feel are at great risk. But I have not received any answers. None of these things will be his priority. I understand the immigration problems. Really. I even defended trump early on when he said he would call a halt to immigration. Why? Because he was not quoted fully. He finished the statement by saying he is calling for a moratorium until we could fully examine our policies. We DO need to be cautious. Of course we do. When he examines our policy with regard to legal immigration he will find that it takes an average of one year for immigrants to be vetted. But again I do not object to caution and an effective process.
All that said, I feel he and the people who surround him do not care even the tiniest bit about any of the issues that concern me. And it terrifies me that all three branches of government will soon be under the total control of one party. People were so upset with Obama, but he had much opposition. Going forward, we will have a leader who has unfettered power.
I understand the discontent of the average blue color workers who supported trump as their savior. But I do not think trump cares about them either. He has proved that in numerous ways throughout his career. Manufacturing jobs are not going to come back. Technology will see to that. I predict that the economy will go down under trump, hopefully not as far back as 2008 when the Dow Jones stood at around 7,000 as opposed to the last few years when it has been at 17,000 to 18,000 plus.
Obviously I could go on forever here. I will spare you. I will never support or condone violent demonstrations. I will support a peaceful transfer of power, holding my nose throughout the process. I will do so partly because I will follow Hillary’s gracious bidding in her wonderful concession speech. And then I will do whatever I possibly can to ensure that this bad man has only four years to walk all over the already downtrodden. I hope I am wrong about him….but I don’t think I am.
Thank you for listening to this lament from a woman who feels that this election has spit upon everything I have held dear all my life.
I have been unable to find my graciousness yet, and have no immediate plans to do so. To acquiesce is to condone, to legitimize a man of mean-spirited bigotry, ignorance and deceit, to acknowledge the triumph of dark money’s ability to manipulate a gullible public via negative, baseless conspiracy theories, and to forego my own integrity.
I acknowledge my anger and frustration with those who did not vote, either because they didn’t care to responsibly inform themselves or because they supported a candidate who did not make it to the final, as well as those who lodged a “protest” vote, thereby denying a good candidate. I know of young people who did not vote, and will have no patience for hearing them cry when the country does not hand them the rights them have become to expect. I know of minorities who did not vote, and I cannot find the strength as yet to stand up for them when they so ignored an election that will determine their lives.
As of today, I fear that civility, integrity and responsibility are taking a back seat and leaving with the current administration. Elevating trash and garbage has become the new norm. Count me out. I cannot be gracious about it.