“We can no longer afford apathy. We see what it’s bought us. A light’s been shone on some very ugly things that we find absolutely unacceptable on a basic human level, things that keep us from being willing to sit back and ‘wait and see’…
My first impressions just a week after the election of Donald J. Trump
Wait and See? Why I Can’t
There’s a quote I’ve returned to again and again the last few days… “believe people when they tell you who they are, the first time. (Maya Angelou) The president-elect has had months to show us who he is. And I personally saw a greedy, dishonest, con-man, who bankrupted multiple businesses but became a successful entertainer. I saw a man who pandered to the most base inclinations of the human spirit for personal benefit, not caring about the massive harm he was doing through his words as he ripped people apart, marginalized millions and tore a rift through our people that will take generations to heal simply to win an election.
I heard his own voice explain how his obsession with his own male dominance allows him to treat women like playthings, not people. I heard the Pope actually call him out on the hypocrisy of calling himself a Christian. I heard meandering hate speeches without any actual logistical content on how he was going to keep his promises. I saw a man who lacked a basic understanding of how our government actually works.
I saw a man who was proud about figuring out a way to deprive our nation of a tax contribution through manipulating loopholes in the bankruptcy law. I saw a man who seems to have cheated vendors of his businesses, students in his school and on the multiple women he vowed to marry and honor.
I also heard rhetoric that reminded me of other places and times where men like him have been in charge and people have died because the extremists had the say and wanted them gone. And they do have the say right now. In places of power he is placing people who believe extreme things, counter-intellectuals that allow themselves to be ruled by their narrow world view instead of extending their vision to include the full breadth of the people they claim to represent while outright contradicting the knowledge our species has gained. The checks to this dangerous ideology are few and far between.
The Republican Congress will be unchecked in a way a Congress has not been in years and to ensure their impending pork feast isn’t vetoed, I am convinced they’ll compromise over any moral objections to the worst of his proposed agenda. There is a huge agenda of harmful policies of their own they’ve been compiling for years and they will try to pass it quickly while they have control. This almost completely white mostly male contingent are going to implement legislation that cement their privilege for decades to come. The Supreme Court will be seated and swung to reverse progressive decisions, pushing social reform back 40 to 50 years.
We need to prepare ourselves for a reversal of progress on social issues we thought were fairly dead. We need to prepare ourselves for the repeal of national healthcare and the privatization of Medicaid and Social Security. We need to prepare ourselves for attacks on civil rights as some of our fellow citizens are rounded up and we are asked to ‘register’ . We need to prepare ourselves to stand with the victims of the growing hate crime, the person-to-person violence, that seems have been sanctioned by Mr. Trump’s election. We women need to prepare ourselves once again to be told that our whole lives need to be man-splained to us. We need to be prepared when ISIS can’t resist poking a very volatile and vengeful personality. We need to be prepared for when our nation is alone in the world and our allies are gone because we dishonored our current agreements.
We need to be vigilant. We can not ‘let it go’. You who ask us to are still fat and happy in your apathy, thinking your work is done now that you’ve cast your vote and the election is done and that this business as usual and has been just any other election. What you need to realize is that for those of us who saw something different in this man you idolize, it’s been a call to action. We can no longer afford apathy. We see what it’s bought us. A light’s been shone on some very ugly things that we find absolutely unacceptable on a basic human level, things that keep us from being willing to sit back and ‘wait and see’.
We feel that we don’t need to wait and see what he does because he’s told us what he’s planning to do and we believe him. History has told us too where this is likely to go. This pattern has happened before. When people are protesting , it’s not sour grapes over a lost election. It’s entirely about the ideology that won. It”s using our freedom of speech to combine our voices into a warning siren to halt the impending fascism before it’s fully begun.
We will not let it go because we are preparing. And you should realize that we are preparing to fight from our souls to ensure that the vile society his campaign promised does not come to pass. To us, life and liberty and the extinction of our species are at stake. If you don’t get it right now, that’s ok. You will. Just wait and see.