I haven’t blogged in a very long time, which I regret, and I’m not too pleased to be re-entering with a political theme, but I need to work through this, as I think we all do.
When my flatmate told me this morning that Trump had won the US election I didn’t believe her. I had to check for myself. I went to bed last night sure that Hillary Clinton would win. After all, I told myself, America wouldn’t elect the racist, sexist, xenophobic bigot who had insulted almost every demographic out there? Turns out America would. And it shocked me. It shocked me that in spite of all the progress we’ve made towards equality, be it of gender or race or religion, there are still so many sexists and racists ready to elect a man who frankly disgusts me. I understand that Hillary Clinton was not an ideal candidate, I know a lot of people hate her, but she said a lot of the right things for me. Also she never bragged about sexual assault or harassment, which is a big plus.
After hearing Trump had won my first feeling was despair. Then I tried to look at the bright side: surely we as a global community would band together and oppose such terrible misogyny, racism and just plain idiocy? Surely we would show love in the face of such great hate. I still try to think this. But every time I open a news app or google his name, despair threatens to swallow me. The huge wave of hatred he has unleashed rivals 1940s Germany. He preys on the fears of the already racist. He encourages people to be violent. He said America would not help their NATO allies, unless they paid enough. And in 70 days he’ll become the leader of the most powerful nation in the world. I don’t know about you, but right now I thank God that I am not American.
What I will say, is this: in the face of evil, we are given the chance to show goodness. In the face of hatred, we get to share love. In the face of racism we can celebrate diversity. Right now we need to start trusting each other. We need to start finding similarities instead of differences. We need to start seeing the good in each other. Because if we learn to be friends, I know it sounds beyond cheesy, but if we learn to stand together, in spite of our differences, we will defeat racism and misogyny and homophobia and islamophobia. In every story there’s a bad guy. Maybe we weren’t expecting to get a real life super-villain, but you know what? Every bad guy in every good story loses. The Doctor will always defeat the Daleks, Thorin and Co. win the battle, Frodo destroys the Ring, Harry Potter beats Voldemort. And you know how they all did it? Together. None of our heroes is alone, even Batman had Robin to help him. The key to defeating the bad guy is not to do it alone. And the key to defeating this bad guy (which doesn’t necessarily mean destroying him) is to spread love. To find common ground with people and show that we are stronger than he is. We have a voice and that voice matters. We will not accept racism. We will not accept islamophobia. We will not accept homophobia or misogyny and we will not accept hatred.
I hope and pray that the Donald Trump of the victory speech is the one who takes office in January, but I really can’t trust that it won’t be the Donald Trump of the race. At the very least until then the world will continue to spin. And maybe his election will bring the world closer together instead of separating us even more from each other. Love is stronger, remember that ;).