Unprecedented and Un-Presidented
This piece was published on Medium, the week that Donald Trump won the election to be President of the United States.
While it is very hard for many of us to come to grips with the results, we must not be blinded by the divisiveness and racism that has defined the newly elected. We cannot assume this is as dangerous as we do. That only breeds anxiety and denial about the new reality that our set of laws and freedoms has ushered in.
Instead we should look at what really happened, the true nature of this disruption. Clinton wasn’t defeated, the Democratic party wasn’t defeated. The entire political system was defeated. Against all odds, a dark horse overcame the pundits, creating possibly the biggest upset we will ever endure. But the American people elected Trump, using the rules of our political system, and that cannot be dismissed.
It is more than upsetting, it is depressing: the divisiveness, racism, sexism, and hate that Trump has stoked and brought out into the light. Like most of my friends and family, I live in a bubble, where Trump supporters are the minority. Where inclusivity trumps division. Please remember this is still the case— Clinton won the popular vote. But around the world, experts misread how much hate there really is.
This is time for a very serious grappling with reality. We can no longer pretend that our ideological opponents don’t exist — on both sides. Partisanship has become so extreme that each side had their own set of facts, refusing to work together, paralyzing our political system. Fox News created an industry around editorialised ‘faux news’, while MSNBC followed suit. Both sides have created massive echo-chamber bubbles, that could not be more different. We can no longer spread misinformation, disinformation. It is not healthy for alternate political realities to be so disparate. The Democrats have flatly ignored certain political realities, in favor of firing up their base with lofty rhetoric. But I place blame with the GOP: Flatly denying climate change is completely inexcusable. We must not blatantly disregard certain facts.
The news media has helped perpetuate a bubble that has grown and grown: the political establishment. Sanders slammed political corruption, the Tea Party slammed corruption, the OWS movement, and Trump ran his campaign promising to end “Politics as Usual”. Both Democrats and Republicans rely on a complex system that favors special interests over the interests of the average American. Simply because most Americans are too apathetic to create the change they want to see. I hate to say it, I really do, but it’s the truth. It’s just the way it is. Or at least until this morning. Because yesterday, voting trumped apathy.
Americans have entrusted Trump to completely destroy the status quo. Completely. Trump isn’t here to destroy love or the good in the world. That may be a side effect. But Trump is here to end political corruption. Not incrementally. Not, ‘4 years of a transition’. No, the American People want profound change, immediately. Instead of division, we should unite to demand the change that we’ve been promised.
The great American experiment continues. Trump is but a symptom a something that has been brewing for years. Trump is the anti-President, disrupting the presidency like never before. Calling into question the current paradigm of unlimited corporate campaign contributions, the “First to the Post” two party system, the electoral college. Trump is not President, he is unprecedented. The U.S. is now in Un-Presidented territory.