So the results are in and it's looking very likely at the time of this writing that Donald Trump will become President of the United States. I am honestly at a loss for words and I don't know what the future of our country will be like. I feel like my worst fears are coming to life and I don't know what I should do from here on out. As these will be my last weeks of school before I get my diploma and am sent off into the real world, I feel like I'll be left all on my own as I struggle to get by in Trump’s America.
Some of my main concerns are that Trump will scrap the Paris Climate Agreement and set our progress back significantly on the issue of climate change, his access to the nuclear codes, and the fact that all three branches will be controlled by a single party, which will allow him to pass whatever insane policy ideas he comes up with. You can see how this is not good for maintaining our system of checks and balances.
I also must mention how antagonistic he has been towards the press, especially those in the media who criticize him for whatever reason. He has threatened to “open up the libel laws” and sue those who speak ill of him, of which crowd I’m apart of, and I'm concerned about the ramifications this would have on our First Amendment rights. Mind you, I'm still going to write my articles no matter what the president thinks about them, because our constitutional rights are far too important to surrender just because one's own opinion happens to hurt the president's feelings.
If there’s any consolation to take away from this, my hope is that this could send shock waves over to the neoliberal Democratic Party that the old centrist strategy of running to the right every general election is not the way you win elections anymore. We had a chance to elect a true progressive like Bernie Sanders, who crushed Trump by around ten points on average, and yet it was not to be.
My other hope is that in four years time, we will be so fed up with the nightmare of Trump that there could be a hard shift to the left and maybe, just maybe, we may finally elect a real progressive (like Elizabeth Warren for example) who will address our concerns and reverse the damage of not just Donald Trump, but of nearly forty years of bipartisan and institutionalized contempt for the working class first enshrined by Ronald Reagan. The last part is important because Trump didn’t just come out of nowhere; he is in fact a symptom of a system that has been decaying for a long time.
Despite my fears, I believe that it is essential for us to keep our chins up and unite as we fight back against the dangers Trump poses to our republic and potentially the globe. Donald Trump becoming president was a wake up call for me and I can no longer stand idly by as our country treads down a dark path.
I may come from a more stable, well-to-do background personally, but I want to get more involved with progressive groups who stand up for everyone who is struggling to get by and reach out to those in need. On a final note, I want everyone who feels victimized by this situation to know that I and many other people are here with you, and that you are not alone. If we stand together, as Bernie Sanders says, we can make it through this and there's nothing that we cannot accomplish.