I don’t know what to say. Donald Trump has been inaugurated as the President of the United States as of today. President Trump. It has a certain ominous ring to it. For most, this is just a dark timeline, an alternate universe in which we select the worst leader just for kicks. But for some, this isn’t science fiction. It’s real life.
Real people will be affected by the Trump Administration. Their lives will be thrown into turmoil, their futures into chaos. It’s not hard to understand why some people are scared and angry. Yet, some tell them that their identity isn’t so important. “We have to put your freedoms on hold.” “You’re just going to have to wait a little longer.” They say we have to tone down identity politics in order to accommodate the diminished white working class. We have to curtail the freedoms of minorities to placate the majority. That’s some bullshit.
I’ve got a confliction in my head right now. The desire to reach out to those who think Trump is going to bring about job salvation is at war with the need for personal freedom for blacks, Hispanics, women, and the LGBTQ. I want the less deplorable Trump supporters to come over to my side, but it’s hard to reconcile that with the fact that they voted for and put into power an evil machine. I want to completely write them off. They would rather have their fabled jobs come back – which they won’t – than letting every other American enjoy the same rights as they do. They might not be racist or misogynistic themselves, but they voted for those who are. They might not be evil on an individual level, but when it’s all added up, they permitted evil to run the country. I want to let the machine grind them into dust and hope that they see the error of their ways. But I know they won’t.
Humans are largely selfish. We are neither inherently good nor evil, just selfish. We, like water flowing down a hill or electricity surging through a circuit, take the path of least resistance. If an action comes easy to us – even if it is technically harder – we will do it. Only the greatest of us will take the harder path.
So what is the harder path? Patience and planning. Build a movement from the ground up, not just in the sense of a grassroots undertaking, but also in seizing state legislatures from the racist GOP and even from maligned Democrats who put corporations above actual people. Change won’t happen just from the top. It comes from everywhere, from all directions. It can come from your school board or city council or it can come from the President, Congress, or the Supreme Court. We looked to President Obama for change, but did we look to ourselves?
I don’t know what to say except do something. You’re angry, yes, but breaking shit isn’t going to help. I know you might be without a voice, but don’t let violence be your only sentence. The past is prologue and we’re beginning the first chapter of a beautiful epic. If you’re angry or scared about your future or your family’s future or this country or even the entire planet, then do something.