Ok, I’ve moved through the stages of grief. As a former Republican, I may have gotten to acceptance a bit faster. I was initially as devastated as anyone.
How did we make such a schmuck our president? Seriously.
But here’s the thing: After listening to a lot of analysis and people who voted for Trump, I believe (hear me out folks) that Trump voters are not all racist, homophobic woman-haters. Not even close.
The people I’ve listened to don’t care who you love or marry. Seventy percent of Americans don’t care. They don’t want to deport my Dad’s caregiver. They don’t hate Muslims. Most people don’t want to overturn Roe vs. Wade even if they are against abortion.
People who call this a “whitelash” are conveniently ignoring that whites elected Obama twice. Take that off the table already. It’s offensive. Obama holds a remarkable approval rating. Michelle is the most beloved First Lady in history.
Are there fringe wackos who voted for Trump like the KKK? Yep. Are there idiots who have taken the results as a license to attack minorities. Yep. But they are not who got him elected. The first thing we can do as a nation is denounce that–loudly and forcefully. I’ll march for that.
Let’s stop echoing a narrative of hate to make ourselves feel better about this loss or superior to anyone. It isn’t true. And not looking at the truth about our friends and neighbors is to stay in a place of ignorance and foster more anger.
It’s mostly about the economy. It’s about the very people who likely bought into Obama’s hope and change message and who are more hopeless and still stagnant after eight years.
It’s about rejecting the slick game of politics, where promises are made in public but favors are curried in secret, where minorities are often exploited for power.
It’s about saying, “Wait a minute, I repaid my student loans and I worked through college to pay my own tuition. You can too.”
It’s about getting government bureaucrats out of micromanaging our businesses and our healthcare. Be honest, didn’t Hillary come across like the world’s biggest micromanager? Trump, not so much.
His warts and ugliness are in plain sight. Hillary’s are smoothed over, edited (some might say deleted) to a point that feels phony, making us wonder if she’s phony.
But enough about why and how we got here.
The election is done. Let’s focus on more than just opposition. What do we want to achieve? How do we make each other safer? How do we bring prosperity back to where it’s been decimated? How do we rise up against racism and hatred and call it out everywhere we see it? How do we advance common goals?
How do we heal the wounds this vulgarian, who is now our president, caused? How do we make America great despite him.
It’s not the Apocalypse. It’s just the next day.