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Wednesday, November 9, 2016

a letter to my progressive friends in the wake of the election

My dear friends,

I've been up and down the newsfeed today and I've seen it all: people rejoicing, people unfriending, happy dances, profile pictures changed to all black, people thanking God, and people asking the question, "Why?!  How could this happen?"

If you really want to know and understand, I will take a stab at it.  My voice doesn't speak for everyone, so take it with a grain of salt, but I'll make an attempt to show you what's going on on the other side.

I'm caught in the juxtaposition of landing between all of these things because of my own beliefs - I'm a third party person at heart, but I run in the circles of the blue and the red and I have a glimpse of the pulse of both.

Here's the deal, my progressive friends, and it comes down to a few things - first, you have to understand that some people just really really hate Hillary and would prefer to elect Kermit the Frog and Barney the purple dinosaur over her.  When they see her, they have a visceral reaction.  Her very face causes them to roll their eyes.  You know, like how you feel when you see Trump?  Yes, like that.  They hate her for many reasons - they hate her because she is establishment, because she behaves like she is above the law, because she is entangled in murders, and in human trafficking children.  If they're really passionate in their disgust, they hate the way she laughs, they think she is not medically fit for the job, they hate it when they hear reports of how her aides are treated, being lashed by her sharp vulgar tongue (Yes, I know, your blood pressure just went up and you started listing the offenses on the other side.  You have that right.  I'm just explaining.  Don't get upset.  Or do, it's up to you.  I'm just trying to lay it out for you to understand.).  They hate her stance on late-term abortion, they hate how she would undermine freedom by seeking to remove personal protection from people's homes, they hate how she picks fights with Putin - and in doing so, in their opinion, is seeking out World War 3.

I heard an interesting poll result last night when watching the beginning of the results.  The anchor on NBC said that out of the undecided voters, when it came down to it, they chose Trump two-to-one over her.  This should speak volumes about the fact that many people didn't necessarily want Trump, but they just absolutely hated Hillary that much.

Other people who voted for Trump not only disliked Hillary, but they actually loved Trump.  I know, you don't get it.  But here is why they did: he is the real freakin deal.  Because of the way that he spoke (albeit in an unpolished, crass way), people related to him.  He was finally not someone who was going to bow to the establishment.  He said things that you're not supposed to say, but that are things that may be overheard at a backyard barbecue.  He says what he thinks without filter, so people trusted that because he didn't care if you liked him or not.  He brought himself in full form, and some people ate that up.  They liked his policy, they liked his guts.

I can hear you now - the racist, homophobic, etc. comments are not okay!  I actually think that 89% of Trump supporters agree with you.  But they also believe that he's not racist or homophobic.  (Don't stroke out, just listen.)  You point to the idea of building a wall as the very epitome of racism, but Trump supporters are looking at the other side of it: nationalism.  Protection of what is ours in these United States.  That is the methodology by which they believe we can uphold nationalism, and a viable solution.  It's the angle.  You can take it from either side.

The mainstream media expressed themselves last night in shock and horror, but many of their comments were shockingly derogatory - blanketing that the majority of his supporters must be from rural areas, must be white uneducated men, and must have showed up in droves.  They could not wrap their brain around that anyone could like him, but that is because they are not listening.  I do not live in a rural area, but I'm not in the middle of the city, either.  I'm in the burbs, and in the town in which I live boasts a very high percentage of residents with advanced degrees, with a median income of $87k annually.  I drove up and down the streets, and the majority of what I saw were gigantic Trump signs.  I saw a few Clinton ones, but far less than those for Trump.  This city is also proud of the fact that we have residents from all over the world living here.  If the pollsters would have called this town, I feel that they may have had different feedback than what they were getting elsewhere.

This is part of what it comes down to - many of the people entrenched in the media are surrounded by people who are just like them.  They did not take the time to seek out opposing viewpoints, and they didn't listen.  They were shocked when they saw states coming in for Trump.  I was not shocked at all.  I asked them, "Where were you?  Where have you been?" 

I know this seems unfathomable to you, but the feeling you had in your guts this morning was the same feeling that many people felt 4 and 8 years ago.  Just as you are ready to count down the days until he will not be President anymore, people have been counting that for Obama since he got in.

What does this mean?  I think it means we need to start listening to each other.  Yes, in anger we can say accusatory things - and I have heard plenty of those statements today.  A vote for Trump has been said to be a vote for hate. I think that is true - that people hate Hillary that much.

So that's it.  That is what I understand.  I heard a lot of you shouting in the dark and I couldn't stand it. 

Don't give up hope, dear people.  We're in this boat together.  Hug your people, do your thang.  It's going to be all right.  We're America.  Remember the Olympics?  We're on the same team.

Unless you're moving to Canada, I mean.

Peace, love, and no matter who you are, I am pretty sure nobody expected this result today,
Ms. Daisy

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