America, History Has Its Eyes On You
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Politics and Activism

America, History Has Its Eyes On You

What will they see?

24
America, History Has Its Eyes On You
Salon

Since Donald Trump’s inauguration on January 20, 2017, he’s passed seventeen executive actions (including memorandums, executive orders, and proclamations) that have changed America’s policies drastically. He has frozen all federal hiring (except for military personnel and critical public safety positions), withdrawn the U.S. from the Trans-Pacific Partnership, and rolled back the Affordable Care Act, which will affect millions of Americans’ healthcare coverage.

The day after, 3 million Americans attended the Women’s March on Washington, including people who I am proud to call my classmates and friends.

At a smaller level, I have experienced death threats directed at me when walking on campus from a person passing by in a vehicle.

Kellyanne Conway and Sean Spicer, both in positions close to the president, told Americans to ignore facts and believe what they are told instead, using the term "alternative facts". In case you didn’t know, alternative facts are outright falsehoods. Many are comparing this to Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four quote “The Party told you to reject the evidence of your eyes and ears. It was their final, most essential command.”

Another executive order has banned all Syrian refugees from entering America indefinitely and has frozen entry for 120 days for most other refugees. As the New York Times notes in its chilling article “Anne Frank Today Is A Syrian Girl”, there are striking similarities between 1930s/1940s Europe and 2010s America, especially in the mistrust of refugees and widespread xenophobia.

A Twitter bot is tweeting the names of Jewish refugees refused entry to the United States before and during World War Two who were murdered in concentration camps because they were not granted asylum in America.

The White House, for the first time in history, deliberately omitted Jews from the Holocaust Remembrance Day statement on the grounds that “others were killed too”, which is especially poignant considering the recent rise of anti-Semitism.

There has been a resurgence in hate crimes since the election according to The New Yorker, which is supported by an FBI study that reports a 67% increase in hate crimes against Muslims nationally in 2015.

And if you’re okay with this, fine. It’s not my place to make your decisions for you. I’m just reminding you of something that every previous generation has also known and lived with: you are being watched from the future. Will they choose to continue a cycle of hate or reject it and become greater than anyone ever imagined?

In the words of Lin-Manuel Miranda, history has its eyes on you.

Your children are silently remembering the decisions you make and learning from them. Will they be proud or ashamed of what you’re doing?

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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