By Allison Baroni
Donald Trump is a man who spreads division.
His wall, his hate speech, his sexist actions and language all harm others and often monopolize on people’s fear. My first reaction to the incoming results of this election was anger. And anger can be motivational–but lashing out at Trump supporters, at Trump, and at others is simply counterproductive.
It is the opposite of what I claim to believe in–love. So I’m choosing love. I’m choosing prayer.
I’m still angry. I’m still a bit–maybe more than a bit–self-righteous. But instead of seeking arguments I’m going to (try to) end them. Instead of fighting against his beliefs by serving others-refugees, immigrants-with self-righteousness and anger, I’m going to remember the reason I care about these people in the first place–love–and I’m going to serve them with it.
I don’t know how successful I’ll be. But I know that God is with me every step of the way, and I hope that I never forget that.
Disclaimer: I am fully aware that my opinions are not those of most students at Pres. I am humbly presenting my views and of course, all opposing ones are respected
Especially in Northern California, the liberal agenda has a tendency to drown out the views of its Republican voters. Presentation has created an environment where supporting Donald Trump is an act of treachery.
As we can tell from Twitter and other non-reliable media sources, teens are ‘scared’ of the people who voted in his favor. Meanwhile, I’m scared to walk down the halls of my own school.
It’s appalling the kinds of things bay area teenagers and teachers are saying about Trump and if those things were to be so openly said about Hillary Clinton, there would be an outrage.
This election was a huge wake up call to those who don’t realize that Northern Californian’s live in a bubble with very different beliefs than the rest of the country. Especially under-aged kids who aren’t educated to the extent that they’d like to believe.
In no way do I want to undermine the wisdom and ability of teens. We have amazing potential and we are very driven. But that doesn’t mask the ignorance we still hold.
This is hugely driven by social media. It’s very easy to go to a liberal news source, or your friends Twitter account and get false or biased information. This is not news.
I come across students spewing out their opinions on his personality or the things he’s said. Meanwhile they ignore his policies and beliefs.
Although these issues are immense, we cannot focus on comments a nominee has made. There are bigger issues at stake.
No one can deny that Trumps statements have been gross and demeaning. But as a country, that does not affect the laws and policies that will be passed.
You will not wake up tomorrow in a country where being gay, or being a woman is illegal. You will not have your right to female education repealed. You will not have your right to marry someone of your gender taken away. Your family members will not be taken from your home and sent away. This is not a dictatorship. And even if it was, Trump is not an evil leader who hates the people of America.
I have full confidence that we will not take steps backwards in the department of social rights. And if you have a clear idea of Trumps beliefs, you’d know that isn’t his agenda.
Obama had a huge problem with how to economically run this country. And people are fed up with it. We need reform and we need to stop digging ourselves into a deeper hole of debt. And the reason Trump was elected has nothing to do with race, or gender, or sexual orientation. It has to do with his policies.
I’ve heard people say that they’re disgusted with the african americans, latinos, women and gays that gave him their votes. But it doesn’t surprise me at all. In fact, I’m delighted that there are Americans who have decided to stop focusing only on their race, and start realizing that America needs real economic and structural reform.
This is not to disregard the dignity of immigrants and minorities. Everyone deserves the right to a comfortable life but no one can wave a magic wand and make it happen. Everyone has an opinion as to who should receive more money but no one can come up with where it should come from. Other than ‘take it from the rich’.
But who are the ‘rich’? They are successful American workers who go to work everyday and stimulate the economy, whilst paying their fair share of taxes, and more.
Contrary to popular belief, Trump does not hate immigrants. He has said countless times that he wants to reform the immigration system, to make it more efficient.
We cannot sustain an economy where open borders allow anyone from any country to come in and reap the benefits of America. This is not because they aren’t human and this is not because they don’t deserve it. It’s because it’s not realistic and not possible.
We cannot continue to aimlessly hand out money to everyone who is in need. We have a serious structural problem that needs to be dealt with from the inside. Businesses carry our economy and provide innumerable job opportunities.
Of course, not everyone is eligible for these jobs, which is why education needs to be reformed as well. But saying that it should be ‘free for everyone’ is an ignorant and unrealistic suggestion to the problem.
In conclusion, I believe that the closed mindedness of the liberals I’ve witnessed is atrocious. The only way to truly have an accurate opinion is to educate yourselves on all aspects of the candidates, rather than narrowing your focus on gender, race and sexuality.
And of course, if you do that, and still keep your initial opinions, that’s perfectly respectable. Everyone has the right to their opinions. Even if you don’t agree.
The following is an open letter written after the election by Anna Roth to her Grandfather.
Today I am devastated. Rarely, if ever, have I experienced an event outside of my own personal life that caused this much of a reaction. I have likened it to how I felt after the Orlando shooting and how people felt after JFK was shot.
As I reflect on this feeling, I realize that there is a great possibility that you don’t feel the same way as a person to which I am ideologically diametrically opposed .
I held my friends and we cried listening to Wolf Blitzer say the words, “Donald Trump is now the President Elect of the United States.” I held tightly on to two of my dearest friends because they are both Middle Eastern and have Muslim heritage.
As I held on to those who mean the most to me, I had genuine concern for their safety because of the looming threat to their recognition as valuable members of this great country.
No one should have to feel sincere apprehension for the future safety of a loved one.
I watched my own father have tears in his eyes for the first time in 6 years.
This is a great loss to what I consider the great progress this country has made in the last 15 years. I am liberal, I am progressive, I am an aspiring democrat, and I am a member of the Catholic Church.
From the past 13 years of my intensive Catholic education, I have come to understand that the message from the current president elect of this country could not be more in opposition to my relationship with Christ and His living word.
I write to you tearfully and grieving, knowing that, you, the man that I inherited much of my interest for writing and learning, my devotion to the church, and my signature vibrant jocular personality from may have contributed to this intense disenchantment.
This election is different and because it is different, it is important that people take ownership of their vote and take responsibility for the person they helped elect.
It is no longer acceptable to hide and defer responsibility for this by opting to not share who you voted for. It is not a measure of pride to decline to disclose your vote, it is the hallmark of a coward.
So, I am asking you, one more time: Did you aid in the outcome of the election?
I love you,
By Tony Nguyen
Let me just say right now that I am absolutely disgusted with everyone who voted for Trump out of their own volition.
How dare you?
How dare you, citizens with such power and privilege, use everything that you have to elect a man who will without a doubt demolish everything our vulnerable populations have worked to build for themselves?
How dare you, with the education you’ve been GIFTED with, consciously choose a man advocating for the eradication of Muslim people, Latinx people, black people, and LGBT people when these very people have been dying for their rights in this country for decades?
How dare you decide that the success of an economy which serves the upper class while at the same time destroying our planet and the livelihoods of thousands of people— how could you possibly decide that that is more important than the lives of those who have suffered in this country for centuries in the hopes that their posterity might have a brighter future?
This is their bright future. More discrimination, more suffering.
And you did it knowing full well what you were getting into. Does your opinion matter more than the lives of the marginalized?
You know what? I hope you can look your friends of color, your Muslim friends, and your LGBT friends in their eyes and tell them that you voted for a man who wants to eradicate them. I hope you can look them in the eye and tell them that you hate them.
Because this isn’t just supporting one man, this is supporting the voice of racists, of misogynists, homophobes— this is supporting and validating every single person who has ever committed a hate crime. This is encouraging them to continue— with vigor.
This is not a matter of opinion. This is a matter of lives being destroyed.
My parents and grandparents are devastated. They were refugees, they immigrated here in the hopes of a brighter future. And yet my dad’s friends are in tears, saying this is just like watching South Vietnam fall to the communists.
This is just like watching their own country die.
For the country they had trusted all of their hopes and dreams to, the country they put their lives at risk for, the country they entrusted with their children in the hopes that their children won’t have to fear death the same way they had— has fallen.
And instead of a Communist coup, this leader was democratically elected.
Everything my parents had worked for, everything my grandparents had sacrificed, all of that? You voted to kill that.
You voted to kill that. You spat in our faces and told us that we don’t belong here. And we’re some of the most privileged immigrants of color in this country. There are people dying to get into this country, dying because they can’t get into this country, and you voted in favor of that.
I can never forgive that. I can never forgive you.
There is a hatred unlike anything I had expected to come about at the core of my heart for people like you.
I hope you never ever forget what you’ve done. Because there are people who won’t be able to.
By Sanjana Garg
To all my family, friends, and acquaintances who voted for Trump – this one is for you.
I am furious. I am furious and disappointed and boiling with anger. But mostly, I’m confused.
I’m confused as to why you would want Trump. Why would you want someone that calls all Mexicans “rapists”, makes fun of autistic people, and has been accused by multiple women of sexual assault?
This is the world you are creating for your daughters, your sisters, your wives, your mothers.
I don’t understand how people can create a world where anyone can walk up to woman and grab whatever they wish and touch them without waiting for approval. I don’t understand how people can create a world where “boy will be boys” so therefore they can degrade and humiliate woman as they please. I don’t understand how people can create world where being a person of color or a member of the LGBTQ+ community calls for fearing for their lives.
Because that is what is happening.
And most of all, I don’t understand how you can not only agree with but advocate for this.
By Samantha Denny
I saw the results, and I was disgusted.
I couldn’t believe that a person like him was standing there, next in line to be the president of our country. And then I burst into tears. I cried because I was scared. Scared for my friends who are all different races. Scared for my friends who are women, ready to go out into the world only to be met with that thing screaming from the television.
I was, and still am, scared for my mom, a working woman who insists he won’t be able to do what he says he wants to do. I am scared for myself, because now that he, whom I will not name out of my pure disgust, is president, I don’t know if anyone is safe. The fact that the mere thought of the presidential election drives me to tears speaks volumes about what has happened, and I’m just a woman. I’m not a person of color and I’m not a part of the LGBTQA+ community, I’m just a woman.
This election is a kick in the face to women everywhere. It tells us that no matter what we do, no matter how qualified we are, no matter how hard we work, we are only as good as our mistakes, and men don’t
have to worry about that. The man had accusations of sexual assault in the double digits. He had a tape released where he spoke with such vulgarity that I want to put my hands on my ears and scream to drown it out, but no one seems to care.
And somehow, the American people have decided that the living horror who has done so much evil that the worst people in history would blush and call him scum is fit to serve our country. The monster who wanted to build a wall, wanted to deport immigrants because they are obviously a threat based on their race, has screamed that women are disgusting, that pregnancy is an inconvenience to work, has squawked how attractive his own daughter is without regard for how disgusting he sounds, and everything I can’t bear to say.
I look at this presidential race and all I can say is “I hope you’re happy, America.” I ask “What have you done?” I sob and cry and seethe and burn because the creature I can’t even find words to describe is going to be running our country because no matter how progressive America shouts it is, we could not handle having a female president after a Black president.
America couldn’t be progressive enough to select a qualified woman, instead seeing some worth in the idiotic, brainless, living nightmare that built a platform on racism, misogyny, and bigotry. And honestly, his vice president is arguably worse.
By Dusty Hill
I will admit it, I was a Gary Johnson gal.
You probably think I’m a pothead now.
Allow me to politely correct you. I’ve come to consider myself fiscally conservative and socially liberal. In my opinion, the government should aim to cut the wasteful spending that continues to push us further into debt. I believe we should simplify our complex and confusing tax code because as is, it often works to benefit large corporations instead of hard working citizens. In addition, I do not see the fairness in taxing “rich” people exhorbitantly more just because their hard work has found them success. We should halt the foreign military interventions (that seldom end positively) and also provide immigrants with easier access to work visas so they can receive the same protections as citizens. And lastly, I believe the government should respect privacy. Women, not the government, should be making the tough choices regarding their bodies and all adults should have the freedom to marry whomever they choose. Gary Johnson was the candidate who stood for these beliefs.
Look, I know Johnson is a quirky dude. Like extra quirky. But when your options are a bigot and a criminal, maybe a couple social quirks aren’t so horrible.
Am I a Democrat? Republican? Neither, really, which leads me to my problem with our political system and the way in which most Americans vote. Because of our polarized two party system, we elect candidates that could not differ more. So after the election results are called, we are left with nearly half the country already hating the new President. We put politicians who disagree on every issue in the same room then we wonder why “nothing gets done in DC”. Dare I say it’s because we are too stubborn to consider the thought of having a moderate person leading us; one who might be able to unite people of opposing views?
I’m proposing the idea that maybe, just maybe, we stop taking third parties as a joke. There are some valuable (and moderate) candidates that might actually accomplish great things in DC. While most Americans would not agree with every single thing the new President stands for, the majority would at least be able to tolerate the person (which clearly is not the case we have now). Every person who says that a vote for a third party candidate is a “throwaway” just further perpetuates the polarization of the parties and the political strife between Americans.
In short, there are smart and qualified people with new ideas all throughout this country, and we often do not even give them a chance because they fail to be categorically Republican or Democrat. Even if you aren’t a Gary gal like I am, hopefully you can see the value in doing your research on alternate candidates next election, and maybe even doing the unthinkable: considering someone moderate.