a dark and frightening day

I've spent the past several months reassuring my co-workers and baldly stating on Facebook that Donald Trump would not become President of the United States.

The lesson for me and for many of us: never underestimate what angry, alienated people can be led to do. The racism, hatred, and violence that is always present in the United States, decades of hopelessness and downward mobility that have gone completely unaddressed, and a demagogue fearmonger unafraid to pander to the lowest strains of American life: and here we are.

It would appear the system is less rigged than I thought. I thought the corporatocracy that controls the US would not allow this to happen. I thought Trump's presence on the right -- a huge boon to Democrats by shutting down left-of-liberal resistance -- would also drive moderate Republicans to vote Democrat. If either of these scenarios came into play, they were not of sufficient magnitude to overcome the popular discontent and desperation.

I fervently hate the Democrats and would not have voted for Clinton (and it wouldn't have mattered if I had), but the Democrats are a known quantity. I know what they do. They make war on foreign nations, they deport immigrants and refugees, they superficially (and sometimes meaningfully) support reproductive rights and LGBT rights. They are moderately liberal on social issues, and far-right on both military and economic issues. They are a party of cats, and I expect nothing for the mouse beyond the occasional crumb.

Trump, however, is an unknown. No one knows how far this will go, and whether enough resistance can be mounted against it.


James Redekop said...

For the most part, I expect that Trump will flail around and the Republicans will get around to doing what they really want to do: make war on foreign nations, deport immigrants and refugees, repeal reproductive and LGBT rights, and be strongly conservative on social issues.

johngoldfine said...

You were brave enough and angry enough and determined enough to leave the USA: WMTC. I can honor that.

But to hypothetically enter a polling booth yesterday and refuse to vote against Trump and for the flawed alternative because both parties are rotten? That seems self-defeating, unless your ultimate political goal is to, as they used to say, 'heighten the contradictions' in order to bring the revolution closer. The problem with that view, if it is yours (I don't know) is the pain and damage those heightened contradictions bring in their wake.

I'm far less sanguine about the future than James Redekop.

laura k said...

Thanks for your thoughts, John. Obviously this blog is where I write my own thoughts and opinions. Your mileage may vary, and in this case, does.

GK said...

I will say that what this man will do is not really unknown. He will do what he has promised - turn non-white people, like me, into second class citizens .
What is surely uncertain is whether the Ds have any power to stop him, or rather if they have any spine. I will not blame them if they dont have any spine, because I see the midterm scene for the senate is worse for Ds. So at best it is 8 years of carnage.

laura k said...

Evidence of the Democrats possessing spine has not been seen in a good 30 or 40 years.

When I say Trump is an unknown, I am thinking more about the rule of law than about his beliefs. We know his beliefs. We don't know how far outside the democratic process he will go to see those beliefs in action.

GK said...

Rule of law is secondary for this tyrant-to-be. He has shown it consistently throughout his sorry existence. Racial discrimination in housing, tax gimmicks and evasion bordering on being illegal, sexual predatory behavior, multiple sexual assaults, anti-semitic behavior, white supremacist sympathies. I dont really think there is much an on unknown here in guessing as to what kind of behavior we are going to see.

Charlene Turner said...

My husband and I have been following your blog since you started your journey back in 2003. My husband is from TX while I was born in Winnipeg and came down to TX for work back in 1999. We have been considering moving up there (and back home for myself) for several years now, but this election has become the impetus for us to make the move. I'm hoping that we can get everything started in a month or so and get everything completed in 2 years or less. We both qualify for the Express Entry program and I'm pretty sure I can resume my citizenship if I read everything correctly on Gov't Canada's Immigration pages. I'm hopeful (and my aunts/uncles/cousins are thrilled with the prospect of our families being closer together)!

laura k said...

Charlene, thanks so much for posting! Good luck with your return to Canada. Please feel free to keep in touch, especially if you're moving to the GTA.