Posted by: joshjasper | November 9, 2016

President Donald J. Trump

I have to admit, watching people drop F-Bombs on Facebook last night as the election results starting coming in, and then seeing even more of them this morning, brought a smile to my face.  Their uncensored anger, pain and disgust was a welcome change.  Sometimes I feel very isolated in my feelings about what is going on in our community and in the world at large, and it was refreshing to be reminded that others are just as pissed as I am.

But don’t you dare drop a F-Bomb because you are feeling shocked or surprised.  This shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone that’s been paying attention.  It makes perfect sense to me that Mr. Trump won.  And let’s be real careful not to misplace our disgust either.  You can’t be mad at The Donald.  He didn’t elect himself.  Be angered, outraged and disappointed with ourselves.  We did this.  This was all of our doing.  Remember, we live in a democracy.  This is how this works.  The majority of our country  voted him into this position and the rest of us let it happen.

Now we have to be willing to ask ourselves what all of this really means.  What does it mean to live in what is supposedly the most powerful and influential country in the world and the best two candidates we can come up with are Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump?

I can guarantee you that the people marginalized during Donald Trump’s campaign do not share your feelings today.   Do you really think women, Mexicans, Muslims, African-Americans and anyone else that may feel marginalized are feeling shocked and surprised right now?

Based on their personal experiences living in our country, it would make perfect sense that the majority of our country just elected a man who campaigned on hate, division, sexism and racism.  AND WON.  Yes, people are pissed off about where our country is at right now and feeling desperate to find an alternative candidate.  But don’t think for one second that Donald Trump’s popularity has not been fueled by the purest forms of hate as well.

We as a country are not EVEN CLOSE to being comfortable with having a woman be the President of the United States.  In my opinion, Hillary never had a chance.  And people of color?  Well, we know exactly how we feel about you.  We are threatened by your very presence.

If only we could own these truths. We lack courage as individuals and as nation to really confront these truths.  And so we overcompensate by building walls, creating stricter immigration laws, militarizing our police, and flat-out killing people we don’t like.

Sit in your anger and embarrassment you feel right now.  Allow yourself to really feel it.  Maybe you’ll find that you are disappointed in yourself.  I know I am.  I know I have not done all that is needed.  It’s time for an honest inventory.  And then?

Action MUST be taken.  No more passivity.  The Facebook post this morning where you dropped a F-Bomb is not enough.  Not even close.  It’s time to go to work.

The first step is to actually support Donald Trump when he becomes the 45th President of the United States.  When he takes office, he becomes President Trump.  You may not respect the man, but I do believe it is important to respect the office.  It burns me up when people refer to President Obama as anything other than the President of the United States.  We can’t afford to have more division and hate in our communities.  People are dying on our streets because of this garbage.  No more.  We can support President Trump by making sure he knows how we feel about important issues that impact the lives of people in our country while providing specific resolutions.

Secondly, each one of us needs to really examine our passivity, especially those of use that have privilege.  Yeah, I can hear you already.  Own that shit.  Move past the defensiveness you feel and practice some empathy for Christ’s sake.  Put yourself in the shoes of the black family that came into our office seeking resources the other day.  Allow yourself to really listen to that father of two children talk about being called a nigger when he’s mowing his lawn by people who drive by his home.  Imagine how that must feel.  Imagine how he must feel when Donald Trump talks about African-Americans.  Now imagine how that dad feels this morning.  Can you feel his anger and resentment?

Think about when I travel to colleges throughout our country to talk about the prevention of sexual and domestic violence and imagine hanging out with me afterwards because I always know what’s going to happen next.  Young women are going to stop by and disclose that they were raped.  Every single time.  They will try to hide their tears and pain, but as they share you can tell how deeply impacted they have been by this trauma and how they may never fully recover.  We try to reassure her, but we know.  We know that 25% of the incoming freshman female students on ANY college in our country will be sexually assaulted before they graduate.  We know that enough is not being done and that so many more are at risk.  Now imagine what it’s like for those women waking up this morning to find out that the man caught on camera talking about grabbing women by the pussy is the going to soon lead our country.  Imagine their fear.

Go to Morton Mississippi with us some summer when we take donated goods down to this incredibly impoverished community and listen to the Franciscan sisters pray and do everything they can to make sure all of the children of color have access to education.  Because they know.  They know those kids don’t stand a chance in hell to break free from the crushing poverty that they experience if they don’t graduate.

Ride with us up to Flint Michigan on our next trip to take clean water to their residents.  You know.  The people who have been poisoned by their government for the last two years.  Let the hopelessness that hangs in the air wash over you and then tell me how you don’t understand why people are killing each other to survive.

But you don’t need to travel to Morton or Flint to experience this type of pain.  You need but step out of your comfort zone and walk in the shoes of someone right here in our community that may experience the world differently than you.  Do that and I can guarantee things will begin to change.  You will eventually demand that leaders take action.  Anything less will become unacceptable.  You will realize that we are better than this.  No longer will you be expecting others to do what must be done. Your voice will be heard and before you know it, you will be leading the charge.

 

 

 

 

 

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