Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Election reflections

I guess it's time to resurrect ye olde blog. We have work to do. But first, I need to reflect on what this all means.

For those of you who say you believe the majority of Americans are good, decent people... I believed that too.

Until last night.

When the majority of our country willfully and deliberately chose hatred over love. Bigotry over tolerance. Racism over equality. Anger over understanding. Assault over consent. Religious intolerance over loving inclusion. Conceit and arrogance over human decency. Insanity over Constitutional rule.

Donald Trump says he want to heal us and be a President for us all. He said "I won't let you down." He's got a lot of work to do for me to believe that. And while I'd like to believe he'll do the right thing, I lost my faith in America last night to do the good and decent thing.

The hypocrisy of calling Hillary Clinton a liar but saying that Trump didn't really mean his lies. The hypocrisy of calling Hillary Clinton an elitist even though she's worked her entire life to make things better for those with less, but not acknowledging that Trump is a billionaire who hasn't lifted a finger for anyone other than himself. The hypocrisy of the media, who spent last night desperately looking for a reason for this outcome without acknowledging their complicity in vilifying Clinton and normalizing Trump. The hypocrisy of holding Clinton to an unattainable standard while not holding Trump to even the most basic of standards.

Although I still want to, sadly I no longer believe the majority of Americans are good, decent people.

I enthusiastically supported Hillary Clinton. I have never viewed her as the lesser of 2 evils. She is highly qualified. She is well respected around the world. She is stable. She has spent her life in public service. And yes, she's a woman. A woman who gets shit done. Who knows how to do her job, but is now just another women who is more qualified but passed over for a man who doesn't have any qualifications other than a dick.

I need to sort through my own feelings of having a President & a government who views me as less than. Then I'll be able to deal with the "I told you sos" from all of the other folks whom I KNOW have felt this their whole lives. My Black, Latino, Muslim, disabled and LGBTQ friends. And so many more.

As a white person, I'm well aware of my privilege. And that so many of my friends, colleagues, and fellow Americans have felt like I'm feeling right now and have known this reality forever.

Now, as a woman and a Jew, I truly understand that feeling.

Last night, America embraced a racist, homophobic, xenophobic, misogynist who had the support of every hate group, including the KKK, neo-Nazis and white supremacists. Who has the support of world leaders whom we as Americans typically view as enemies - Russia and North Korea.

He also had the overwhelming support of evangelicals - and this is a man who clearly is not religious, doesn't understand the Bible or any of its major principles.

How those evangelicals can reconcile themselves to the fact they shared the same beliefs as the KKK, neo-Nazis, and white supremacists is beyond me. How they reconcile themselves that they chose a man who embraces hatred and fear over love is beyond me. How they chose a man who has unrepentantly and gleefully cheated on 2 wives is beyond me.  A man who calls for the expulsion of immigrants while parading his immigrant wife around. A man who lies without remorse. As they like to say, I guess their day of reckoning will come.

I tried to explain this to my husband last night. What it feels like to be considered less than. It's hard for a white man to truly get what that means. No matter how much he wants to. The feeling of utter despondency. Knowing that the majority of America willfully & deliberately chose someone who wants to take away your rights as an American citizen. As a woman. As a Jew. I just can't.

To my family and friends who voted for Trump: I see all these statements floating around about how politics shouldn't get in the way of relationships, and I believe that. We've held different political beliefs for a very long time, and have always managed a warm, loving relationship. Because politics don't matter over family.

But this isn't politics. This is world view. This is about decency over indecency. Humanity over inhumanity. Laughingly calling for a diligent public servant to be killed, jailed, or otherwise tortured.  The glee with which you celebrate the hatred and divisiveness. It's not ok. And it says far more about you and your character than do your politics. You preach love and Jesus and all that bullshit, but last night you deliberately voted for racism. For hatred. For misogyny. For anger and hostility. You deliberately voted for someone who wants me to be and believes me to be less than. And that is what I cannot and will not forgive.

I am going to continue working my ass off to get these hateful people out of our government. I'm going to work for 2018. And then for 2020. I am compelled to do so.

But I do it without the belief I had yesterday that most Americans are decent human beings.

Today, that belief is gone.

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