November 9, 2016

Let's Talk About This Election

If you have been anywhere near social media today you will most likely know that Donald Trump has been elected the next President of the United States.

This completely shocked me. Most of the polls before the election showed Hillary Clinton with a lead, and I think that social media led me to believe that most Americans agreed with millenials (a majority of whom voted for Clinton).

I don't know where I'm going with this post, but since the election my thoughts have been racing and I know that once I write down all of them I won't feel as anxious and overwhelmed.

First I'd like to talk about my own voting experience. I live in Michigan, which was one of the swing states that usually votes Democrat but voted Republican this year. It was a very close race in my state and I feel so ashamed that I wasn't able to vote.

I went to my local voting booth and began the process--I showed my driver's license to a lady, got a ballet, and saw another lady who searched me in the voting database. I wasn't listed in it.

I was incredibly confused because I remember filling out and mailing the voting application. When I told my parents about what had happened, they also remembered me sending the application. It had been about twenty days before the primaries several months ago; I remember that distinctly because I had wanted to vote in the primaries but couldn't because I hadn't sent the application early enough.

A different voting booth worker pulled me into a separate room to see if my paperwork had gotten lost, but he couldn't find it. By this point I was very embarrassed and I was starting to doubt whether I had mailed in my application. I was eventually turned away with a new application and I cried in my car for a few minutes before finally going home. This probably seems like an overreaction, but I've been very involved in politics for the last few months and I'd been nagging my sister and friends about the importance of voting, so for me to not end up voting myself I felt so ashamed and hypocritical.

I still don't know if it was my error or a township error, but my vote likely wouldn't have made a difference considering Trump won my state and the election. What frustrates me the most is that in America it is possible to win the election without winning the popular vote, and that's what happened last night. Yes, that's right: more people in America voted for Hillary Clinton than Donald Trump, but Trump is going to be president anyway. I personally think that is a slap in the face to democracy.

Now let's talk about Trump and his policies, almost all of which I don't agree with. I can see how some people might agree with parts of his platform. The second amendment (the right to bear arms) is important to a lot of Americans. The threat of Isis scares a lot of people. Many people think that Clinton is a liar or even a crook. I understand that, and I understand that a lot of Trump supporters don't agree with everything that he says. But they supported him anyway after everything that he has said and wants to do.

Donald Trump is racist. He accused a Hispanic judge of being biased against him because of his race. He wants to ban Muslims from entering our country. He wants to make 'stop and frisk' policies legal nationwide. He insulted the family of American war hero Humayun Khan because they are Muslim. He has called Mexicans rapists and criminals. He continually demonizes the people who were born with nothing while he was born with everything.

Donald Trump is sexist. He has bragged about sexual assault. He thinks that women who are experiencing workplace harassment should find a new job. When women don't agree with him, he insults them on their appearance, calling them "pigs" and "dogs". He thinks women who get an abortion should be punished. He normalizes rape in the military because, "what else can you expect when you put men and women together?"

Donald Trump is homophobic. He's against marriage equality and wants to elect a Supreme Court judge who would overturn it. After the Orlando shooting, when 49 people were murdered in a gay club, he thanked his supporters for the congratulations about being right about Islamic terrorism. His vice president, Mike Pence, wants to use tax dollars to fund conversion therapy to turn LGBT teens straight. Conversion therapy often leads to suicide.

So, yes, I understand that most Trump supporters aren't racist, sexist, or homophobic. But by voting for this man they are promoting everything that he believes in, everything that doesn't belong in 21st century America.

It frustrates me that a huge majority of young voters did not want Trump to be elected. The older supporters, who likely won't have to deal with the long-term effects of this election, are his biggest supporters. They won't have to clean up the environment and pay off the estimated 2 trillion that Trump's plan will add to the national deficit over the next ten years. And that's a conservative estimate, many believe it will be up to 7 trillion!

For almost half of American voters to prioritize guns, a wall, and emails over the lives of women, minorities, and non-heterosexuals is astounding. My heart is so heavy today and I want to do everything in my power to prevent this monster from accomplishing his discriminatory plans, but I don't know what I can do. I'm terrified for the future of this country. We just elected a racist, sexist, homophobic reality TV star who insults war heroes to the highest position in America.

To quote Hillary Clinton and end this depressing post on a somewhat positive note, "Let us have faith in each other. Let us not grow weary. Let us not lose heart. For there are more seasons to come and more work to do."

To every non-Trump supporter: we will get through this. We will not give into hate. We will not give into fear.

I will be remembering the defeated, hopeless rage that I experienced today and I will be channeling it into progress for the future. I hope those of you who agree will join me.

Xx Katie

12 comments on "Let's Talk About This Election"
  1. This is my first time voting because I just became a US Citizen last year. Bernie Sanders really inspired me to get into politics, because his policies were totally in line with what I believed in. He wanted to get rid of student loan debt (which I have a lot of), offer universal healthcare (which is really important to me since I have lupus), and he has always fought for the marginalized...women, people of color, LGBT, etc. I am thankful to be living in California, a state that bleeds blue. I don't know how my life would be if I lived anywhere else, and how I would be treated as a woman of color. It's sad how a lot of the older supporters lean conservative and are afraid of change. They are afraid that there are more ethnic minorities and it makes them uncomfortable. I am so thankful for the young voters are passionate and are putting effort for our country to change. Thank you!


    PS. Mike Pence is Trump's VP, not Tim Kaine (which was Hillary's running mate). Just wanna make sure you don't make a mistake :)

    1. Thank you, I always get the two names mixed up! I really wish I lived in California, in my area there are a lot of Trump supporters and they can get very in-your-face about it. Every day on my way to school I pass a "Killery for Prison" sign. I was also a big Bernie supporter, but once he lost in the primaries I went with Hillary because her views were far closer to mine than any of the other candidates. I hope that in the future people are more open to differences. I saw a map of how millenials voted and it looks like the future is brighter.

  2. Such a great post! I was reading and keeping up with tweets and news articles throughout the election night and here I was in little ol' New Zealand extremely shocked because one minute hillary was leading - which was what I expected to continue happening - but then the next I get back on and the votes are now in trumps favour. I've never really kept up or understood much about American politics and not until this year. I was reading up on how Hillary had more votes than Trump but less electoral votes than trump which confuses the hell out of me but I guess that's just the way it rolls. Hope everything goes smoothly for the next four years but I am sure something is bound to happen once he really steps into place

    Kathy x

    1. The American system is very confusing and many aren't happy about it, they're protesting it now. This is the second time in my lifetime that someone has won the popular vote but lost the presidency. I think we could learn a lot from New Zealand, I've heard great things about your country! Thank you for reading x

  3. I would be very confused if I were to vote in the US. I don't support Hilary 's politics and what happened the previous years, however, I got a little emotional when I heard her speak yesterday and when she addressed the little girls out there to follow their dreams! As I said, I don't like her, but god, this is much more worse! I cannot believe that people elected this son of a b*tch! Excuse me but I just cannot help it. Yesterday I was reading tweets and someone said: people did not vote for trump because they wanted him or liked him, they voted for trump because they did not want Hilary. Truth or not, he is the president of the US and no matter what, everyone must get through this. I live in Europe and I know that this election has impact on every country and everyone of us. But we must get through this, we will get through this! When you have faith, love, help each other and respect each other everything is possible! Thank you for this read and don't lose faith :) Sending you hugs xx


  4. I am so sorry for you Katie, not only did Trump win but it sounds like quite the ordeal for you whilst you were trying to vote. I would have cried too as I can imagine it must have been so disappointing to have something like that happen to something you were so passionate about. 2016 has not been a great year so far to be honest but I hope we all pull through it together xx


    1. He has a long way to go before he earns my trust or my respect, but I hope that he doesn't continue his campaign of hate and fear into the presidency. Thank you for reading, we're in this together x

  5. I'm not from America, nor am I an expert in Politics. However, Trump shouldn't have won. I'm very sorry you have to deal with this sad excuse of a man for 4 years. Hopefully he does something good for America, which isn't likely. He shouldn't have been elected when like you say, Hillary Clinton was in the Lead. I'm also very sorry you couldn't vote, but voicing your opinion is better than writing on a piece of paper which they change anyways. I hope you're okay and get to vote in 2020.
    I expressed my thoughts on twitter towards those American's who voted for trump and I was disappointed and like I say, I'm not even American.

    Sending love from England xo

  6. I am not into politics in the least, but this election was hair raising at best. This was my first time voting and to be honest I was completely dreading it. I didn't know who I was going to vote for until I was in the booth. As a Christian I couldn't vote for Clinton, but the way Trump viewed people made me ill. Clinton has in the past spoken(and written) out against homeschooling, and the right to own firearms, both of which have been a huge part of my life and hopefully of my children. Trump is an egotistical narcissist, but I hope he is all smoke and no fire.
    The New Old Fashioned Girl

    1. I agree. It was hard for me to decide even with my strong feminist values, I can't imagine how hard it would be for someone with more conservative values. Thank you for reading x

  7. This year I learnt not to rely on the poll. It was the same with Brexit, polls showed remain would win by 75%, however leave won. Most of the people voted to leave were older generation, so in a way they decided the future of the younger generation. It is so sad to see the results of this election. Trump is racist, sexist... whatever you can think of. He is not a president material and he doesn't have the character to be a president. Today I read one of old his old interview in 1998 saying "If I were to run, I’d run as a Republican. They’re the dumbest group of voters in the country..." so people voted for him. Let's hope for the best and let's hope that he changes to be a better person...

    Ela BellaWorld

    1. This election definitely reminded me of the uproar surrounding Brexit. At least the future looks bright if the youth of the world are prepared to continue protesting division.


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