After last night’s presidential election, two Seattle Globalist Youth Apprentice alumni weighed in with their thoughts of the upcoming Donald Trump presidency.
By Esmy Jimenez
President. Donald. Trump.
These words are a jumble in my mouth. Like the poor punchline at the end of one very long, cruel joke and yet here we are. We in the United States have made the royal mistake of electing a world-renowned racist, xenophobe who was literally caught bragging about sexual harassment.
We, the United States of America — arguably the most powerful country in the world — chose to elect a caricature of our worst selves.
Not only has the new president been bankrupt four times, he’s admitted to avoiding taxes. And he’s got the vocabulary of the average 14-year old.
How did we get here?
Why didn’t we take this seriously?
Why do I keep saying we?
We did not vote. As one of 11 million undocumented people in the U.S. — that is people without legal status — I did in fact not vote in this election.
Despite living here for 22 years and paying taxes since I’ve been employed, the U.S. elections went on without me. And yet the votes of others are now my reality.
That means anything is possible. From the infamous wall being built along the U.S.-Mexico border to repealing Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, the executive order that allows me the limited existence I have, this is what the next four years mean to me.
Our country has made a horrible mistake.
Yet here we are.
Two steps forward and a century’s step back.
People love him because he doesn’t care about being politically correct and he says what is on his mind. But that’s not the problem. The problem is that his political incorrectness comes out as misogyny, racism and hatred against humanity while simultaneously proclaiming to “make America great again.”
It just doesn’t make sense.
For one, America was never great for ALL people. America was never great period. We are still looking ahead to a time where hopefully all will be free. Trump’s conception of greatness is innately exclusionary and harmful.
Yes, Trump is only one person. But it is those that have supported, rallied, discriminated, and assaulted in his name that are the true terrorizers of this country. They are the multitude that are angered by the threat of losing power while proclaiming that the foundation of this country is being shattered.
The foundation of this country is built on the literal blood, sweat and tears of indigenous people and the toil of black and brown people. So Trump’s supporters’ fight should not be a fight at all.
Do not forget our place in this country has, is, and will always be the colonizer. We are occupying indigenous land. This is still going on today with the greatest, most historically significant stand for justice happening right now at Standing Rock. Just like the water protectors on the frontlines, we need to protect the rights of all people in this country and restore the narrative to include all people.
Watching the immigrant community, including my parents, realize that this country is not what they thought it was when they decided to come here. Watching the children in this country, including my little brother, wonder why a powerful man is allowed to say mean things and still win when they’re taught in schools to be safe and kind. Watching young girls learn that it is acceptable that men devalue their bodies. It’s dehumanizing.
It is the youth of this country that are hurt and will suffer the most by all of this political noise.
Donald Trump’s victory is a confirmation that the values that we say we stand for as a nation are proven false and, in fact, that the majority of Americans want something very different than justice.