Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Now What?

OK, so what many of us have considered the unthinkable has happened…Donald Trump has been elected president in another really close election that featured the Electoral College anomaly that only ever happens when the difference between the percentage of votes the two candidates got is a fraction of a fraction. And with that in mind, I want to say two very important words to those who seem to think the world is going to end:

Calm down.

Really. Just calm down.

And now five more words that you probably won’t believe I’m about to say:

Give the guy a chance.

Really. Maybe he’ll surprise us. Maybe he’ll grow into the job. Maybe he’ll tell some of his more hateful followers to behave. Maybe monkeys will fly out my butt. But let’s treat him better than Congress and some pockets of the rest of the country treated President Obama for the past eight years. Let’s give him a chance and see what he does. Let’s see if he manages to make good on all the promises he made…especially with Congress on his side.

A year from now some of us will be eating a lot of crow. It’ll either be those of us who thought that a Trump presidency would bring on the apocalypse or those who thought that all of his xenophobic, racist, misogynistic talk was just a lot of bluster.

And quite frankly, I hope that we’re the ones eating crow; it would be a whole lot safer for everyone. I hope that we’re pleasantly surprised by what he does. But…if he does turn out to be just as dangerous as we thought he would be, I hope it doesn’t take very long for his supporters who are decent people to recognize it, and get out their dinner plates.

Both candidates had their flaws, and for many of us Trump’s perceived flaws were more important than Hillary’s perceived flaws. Both candidates were victims of a lot of hyperbole from the other side…many Trump supporters honestly believed that Hillary was going to rescind the Second Amendment (really hard to do) and many Hillary supporters honestly believed that Trump was going to make all Muslims in this country wear yellow crescents (heck, we’ve already sent Japanese-Americans to concentration camps during World War II, so this wasn’t that much of a stretch).

I know that we thought that Hillary would try to make this country not just a better place for her supporters, but for all of us (despite themselves). I also know that many Hillary supporters were afraid that Trump and his supporters were only concerned about themselves, and not the multicultural, multi-religious, multi-sexual rest of us.

We’ll have to wait and see. Although I’m not above the little bit of schadenfreude that hopes that the things he ruins affect his supporters first, I hope this President Trump thing works out for us. Not just for them, but for us all.

So let’s give the guy a chance. If he’s as dangerous and unqualified as many of us thought he was, we’ll find out soon enough; and there will be time to deal with him. But maybe he won’t be that bad.

In which case I’ll gladly let the monkeys fly out my butt.

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