Well…it happened. My Facebook news feed is clogged with despair. Most people could see that America was going this way, but like my college professors, still maintained a hope that democracy would prevail. The problem is, it did prevail. Just not in a good way. All the angry and uneducated, fired up by a reality star, turned out to the polls. And I voted for Clinton, just saying.
I think most sensible people can agree that she was a better choice than Trump. No matter how much you hate her leaked emails, Wall Street speeches, and the controversy surrounding the DNC. For all that, at least she had plans, she policies. Trump’s policy: build a wall. A really big-ass wall. And if they don’t like it, make the wall bigger. Because America sucks. Jobs are in CHIIIYYYYYYYYYNNNAAAHHH. And that’s bad. But I’m going to bring them back. Somehow.
You get the picture.
Nonetheless our democracy prevailed for the worst. And at this point in time, no one should really be surprised. We entertained the notion of a reality star coming to power. Sure a lot of us decried his heinous acts and statements. Republican senators called him out about the videotapes and withdrew their support. But others cheered them on. Why: you could say antipathy. People just don’t like Hillary Clinton, regardless of what she stands for. The election was about personality: who gets your blood boiling. Trump appeals to poor, uneducated whites who feel their way of life being attacked by change. They like his incompetence. No, they really like his incompetence. Because to them it represents a middle finger to the same system they feel betrayed by. When a rich guy says he can make your life better, usually poor people listen. It’s part of the American dream. At least for the hardcore Trumpists. Others, both on the right and left, couldn’t stand him but, for them, it’s a matter of picking poison, and Hillary Clinton was too much of a lethal dose.
What’s my reaction to all this: not confusion. I know why it happened. I know the widespread, blind antipathy that led up to this. And the unwillingness to choose a better candidate, simply because of personal qualities. People just didn’t like Clinton, bar emails and everything else. What’s the implication: politics have become a game of showmanship, rather than policy. If it wasn’t, all this shit would have stopped at day one, after the comment on Mexicans.
But his numbers went up. WAAAAAAAAAY high. George Carlin was right, back in 2007 or 2008 when he said “this country is finished.” Everybody’s scared now. And that’s an appropriate reaction. One of my college church communities is having an official healing service in the aftermath of the election. While that may sound funny, it’s desperately needed. Anger drove us this far. It drove us to appoint someone completely outside of the system to run the system. Hopefully things don’t turn out as grim as people expect. But they still don’t look too sunny.
Are you there, God? It’s us America. Let’s hope we’re still here in four years.