Thursday, November 10, 2016

My Open Letter to America.

I am an FDR Democrat and I have been wandering around in a daze since the Presidential election on Tuesday. I had expected that the election would be close, but I did not believe that Trump would win.

Over the past couple of days I have cried and I will probably cry more in the days to come. I have been imagining a gestapo secret police state funded by our tax dollars and waving our flag. I have been imagining an America where people who believe what I believe would be rounded up and put on trains and killed. That is the version of Trump’s America I have been thinking about and I have been asking myself how that could possibly happen here?

Today I realized that it has not happened. It certainly could, but it did not happen today and I doubt it will happen tomorrow, and - this is the important part - I do not believe it will happen in January, in 2017 or 2018, or ever.

Maybe I am naive.

Don’t get me wrong, I believe that Trump is a feckless thug and a bully and I believe that he is a very real danger to our United States of America. However, more than that, I believe that he is a self-interested opportunist. He’s not a populist and anyone who voted for him thinking that, has been duped. He does not care about the middle class or the working people of this country. And while I agree that he is a racist, I don’t think he actually cares that much. He does not care about anyone who is not named Donald J. Trump. The border wall would be virtually impossible to actually build and I do not think it will actually get built because he doesn’t actually care about it.

Donald Trump only wanted to get elected President. I don’t think he cares about the next four years.

I’m not saying that nothing will happen. Plenty will happen and it will be bad. The next two years are going to be a horror show. Trump will put someone on the Supreme Court. Taxes will be cut, public programs will be defunded. Obamacare will likely get repealed in pieces, though some provisions are too popular to completely disappear. Women and minorities of every kind will be mistreated in some form. None of this is right. None of this good. None of this is fair. But these are things we can fight and I am ready for those fights. I am not going to apologize for the things I believe. I am every bit an American. But because I am an American, I am willing to admit that my side lost. We had more votes, but we lost the electoral college and that’s how it works in America.

We live in a country that elected Donald Trump fair and square. The result of that is going to be an increase in global warming, an increase in fear, a growing national debt, and a weakened, less-respected America on the world stage. That is just reality and I agree, it is awful.

However, it is not the worst-case-scenario. The worst case scenario is the utter descent of America into a fascist nightmare. I do not believe that is going to happen. Trump is a selfish and silly little man, but he is not actually a Hitler. Hitler cared enough about his anti-semitism to become a monster. Trump doesn’t care that much. He is a snake-oil salesman, all he cares about is selling his snake-oil, and America bought it. Those Americans who voted for him will very quickly figure out that he is not going to keep his promises to them, because he does not keep promises, because he never cared about those promises in the first place.

The people who are cheering him this week will hate him next year. They are angry and they are afraid, so they voted for someone who told them what they wanted to hear. That is all that has happened here, the quarter of this country that elected Donald Trump got played. Because tell me, does this make sense: They revolted against the establishment by voting for a rich New Yorker who used to be a Democrat?

The last 36 hours I couldn’t figure out how people I know and love could have voted to end our democracy, I realized today that none of them see it that way. For those of us who lost, this is a devastating and existential defeat. But to those who won, it’s just a win.

If you are reading this and you voted for Trump, I think you made a mistake and I think you will realize that soon. If you’re reading this and you voted for Hillary, take a deep breath, I promise you that the sun will come up tomorrow.

In the weeks and months and years to come, the one thing I am sure of is that this country is going to change quite a lot. I want to do my part to make sure it changes for the better. I think you want that too. So while we have difficult days ahead, they need not be the end days. Donald Trump is a punchline to a not very funny joke, however he is not a demon. I, for one, refuse to be afraid of a man that ridiculous.

To my Trump friends who are tired of getting called racists and sexists and xenophobes, now will be your chance to prove you aren’t those things.

To my Hillary friends who feel that the light has gone out of the world, I am here with this one little candle and I will keep it burning as long as there is blood in my body and a beat in my heart.

God bless America.


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