The election is over and the country should be settling down right?! Donald Trump has won proving that his values and ideas for the country are what the majority of Americans want and everyone else should just deal with it. I mean America had to deal with eight years of Obama and you didn’t hear a bunch of complaining right?
So why are there protests? Why is your gay friend acting like this is the end of the world? Wellllllll let me revisit paragraph one.
OK,OK I know I’m supposed to write about what TV show I watched this week or what nerdy sewing project I just completed (which by the way IS fabulous), but when did I get all political? Well I’m not really trying to be– I’m just going to attempt to be a mediator for a second.
My Internet experience has been flooded the last day either with Republican friends posting abortion/defeat related memes about Hillary Clinton or posting about how the election is over and anyone complaining about the results just doesn’t understand how the system works. I’ve also seen a few posts about how the protesters are just a bunch of spoiled white kids that aren’t used to being told no (insert comments about participation trophies and safe zones).
My Democrat friends on the other hand have been posting what if’s about Bernie, suicide prevention hotlines, tear filled posts about how they are scared at the direction this country is taking or rage filled posts about how another Democrat has won the popular vote yet still managed to lose the election.
So who’s right? What’s the deal?
Well to my Republican friends I have this to say: If you see a woman, LGBT, Mexican, Muslim, or straight white male post something about being scared for the future. Don’t jump in with a comment/thought that they are a whiner that doesn’t understand how this country works. They might be a woman that very clearly understands what it’s like to live in a world that accepts the rightness of a man’s ability to grab a woman by the pussy. Or they might be a legal citizen of the country that fears for the ability of a loved one to stay in the country because of their beliefs or nationality. They might be a LGBT person that is afraid that their rights as a person will be infringed upon.
Are they right to be afraid for these things? Well the women and LGBT community probably have read that Pence wants to do away with some women’s access to birth control (making them unable to afford it is a pretty quick way to take away access) or that he wants to overturn Obama’s bathroom policy. Or they might have seen all of the things Pence has said about the LGBT community over the years. Mexicans have probably heard Trump call them rapists, drug dealers and bad hombres. Muslims have heard him state that they are going to be banned from entering our country.
Are these things that America should support? My Christian friends that were pro-Trump I know can’t believe that all Mexicans are drug dealers and rapists– I also know that they don’t want women to not be able to afford birth control. I hope that no matter what way they stand on the Christian positions regarding homosexuality that they do not wish harm to come to the gay community. I also know that my Christian friends can’t wish to see another religion discriminated against by our government. Protestants came to this country to be able to enjoy religious freedom and I want others to be able to practice their religion with that same openness.
“If the other side had won we wouldn’t be protesting!” Ohhhh really? You’re saying if Trump had won the popular vote, but Clinton had won the election that there wouldn’t be people marching the streets and Trump wouldn’t be shouting from the rooftops that the system was rigged? We wouldn’t be seeing posts about how you needed to go buy as many guns as possible before Hillary Clinton personally came into your house to remove all firearms? So Republicans let the Democrats exercise their free speech for a while. That’s part of how America works.
So as a Democrat I’m all good right? Well– I’d also like to remind my democrat friends that just because someone is a Republican they are not running around sexually assaulting women, kicking out Mexicans and making Muslim women remove their hijab. So don’t verbally attack your Republican friends. Don’t answer the hate with hate.
Those Republicans might have voted for Trump because of his pro-life stance– yes feel free to point out to those people (through calm and clear discourse) that his position has changed as it has become more politically advantageous to be pro-life instead of a supporter of partial birth abortion as he was in 1999.
They also might have voted for him because he promised to re-energize the coal industry. As someone who has lived in coal country and volunteered in West Virginia where there are huge communities impoverished from what coal has done to them– I understand that desire. Everything was better when coal was being mined. Well except for the environment. And the water quality. Oh and that’s the reason why those areas flood so easily. Turns out mining for coal and destroying the very mountains you love allows water to run off in catastrophic ways. Seriously though I DO understand how enticing that sounds. However many experts doubt that even with regulations removed that coal can bounce back. So even though I too love the idea of increasing jobs in the Appalachia region I don’t see how that could happen with coal (however I’m intrigued with the idea of hemp farming– think of all those empty tobacco fields filled with hemp).
“Well I voted for Trump because he tells it like it is!” OK, so this one I personally don’t understand and am at a loss for. Yes he’s brash and not politically correct which can be fun (even I wondered if I should say LGBTQ instead of LGBT– WHICH ONE IS BEST?!?!), but he’s also stirring up racist undercurrents and treating women like objects instead of people of worth. So yes although I get frustrated at times at how caught up people get in political correctness I would prefer to be politically correct as opposed to having someone treat me like a sex object with no other purpose because they like to, “tell it like it is.”
So my final thought is love one another. Republicans answer fear not with scorn, but with love. Tell that person you will stand up for their rights and you care about them. Understand that many women, African-Americans, Latinos, LGBT people feel like they have been told by this election that they are less than. Let them know that you don’t feel that way and try to find ways to show it. Democrats turn that fear into a passion to make a change in the world. Instead of saying all Republicans are wrong listen to their point of views and educate them on your own. Lets find a way to work together to make this a better country for everyone. Yes this country is divided, but before either side spouts off that their side made their voice heard– realize that there is another voice speaking just as loudly right back at you. If we are all screaming at each other we will never see change.