This is a lengthy post but thanks for taking the time to read it ( if anyone bothers to read it).
It has taken me four days to reflect on what has happened this week, I don’t know if I’m going to articulate my thoughts well in this post but with a week filled with mixed emotions of “taking the high ground”, denial, sadness, anger etc… it is, it was an rollercoaster week for a lot of people around the world, particularly in the United States of America.
Just take note that I’m not American, I am not an expert on politics but that isn’t to say that I’m unaware, ignorant or uneducated about what is happening.
The world changed overnight when Donald J Trump became President-Elect in the early hours of November 9th. I watched the news since 10:30 am, November 9 AEDT until it was reported Hilary Rodham Clinton conceded roughly around 7:00pm AEDT .
I was called last minute to babysit my nephew. I arrived around 10:10 am, and my brother in law took off to run some errands and sort out some business. For the entire day, I was watching the election coverage on tv and I couldn’t believe what I was seeing and hearing. I know a lot of people post election have told us, you shouldn’t be shocked or stunned, but this was one of those moments where is was so surreal (nightmare or dream, depending on which “side” your on). My brother came home 9 hours later, who hadn’t been updated until I told him “Dude, he’s leading and the Dow plunged 800 points on the Stock Exchange”, my brother-in-law, who isn’t even into politics, his lighthearted expression changed to a serious look, he didn’t believe me, and then he hopped on the couch beside me, watched the remainder of the election with me , curious, concerned and just thinking ‘what the heck is wrong with you people?’.
Throughout that day, I channel surfed as the results came in, every Australian channel covering the US Election –were for lack of a better word, dumbfounded. I also switched between CNN International , The Bloomberg Network and The BBC and again, they were either perplexed or dumbfounded.
When it was reported that Clinton conceded, it became official. I turned off the television in bitterness and all of a sudden the world looked bleak and I wanted to cry.
I had dinner with my sisters family, we were discussing what we just witnessed and we just felt miserable. I then drove home just feeling uncertain for the future.
I was feeling so annoyed, I was so sad, I was so very angry at and for the American people. So, the first thing I did as I arrived home was what every other of my generation do— post a facebook status. I hopped on my laptop, and it wasn’t a surprise that my facebook newsfeed was full of similar sentiments of disbelief and worry.
I posted a lengthy status expressing my current thoughts at that time of that night, basically a post about my disappointment at the result and sympathy for the American people but reached the conclusion that “we have to move on, it is what it is, that is what they wanted”.
I was wrong.
I woke up the next day, feeling angry, feeling sad and frustrated. I was in denial that night before. As the post election results came trickling in and data of voter turn out, the popular vote and electoral votes was published. I just got even more angry and more confused as ever (It took me watching multiple videos to explain the Electoral College, I wasn’t sure if I was understanding the process clearly, but I concluded that it was a shitty way to elect a President and I’m not going to even go posting how stupid it is).
As usual, I message my friends randomly, at weird times during the day to check up on them and just vent my frustration and anger.
My best friend replied:
‘I sat next to an older white man this morning and I was like uncertain. LOL. And I shouldn’t be. I never usually think like that. It’s just this whole thing. Anyone COULD potentially be a Trump.’
And it was a scary thought to us, that any white person, whether neighbour, workmate or train commuter was a closet racist, bigot or a xenophobe.
As each day passed, that anger , that sadness and frustration wouldn’t die. I felt so hopeless and helpless.
And what is sad is that it’s slowly becoming that way in my own country.This year, One Nation Party (ver. II ) came back and the people of Queensland voted Pauline Hanson in the Senate (What is worse that it’s harder now to neutralise what they represent than it was back in 1997 when I was 7 years old). Donald Trump being elected into office made all the nastiness of what he represented almost normal. He is going to be officially the leader of the Free World come next January, the Commander-in-Chief of a world Superpower and it made it official that Western Democracy was/is spiralling into madness.
This election affected my country, and other countries, it’s going to be one of those moments like the man walking on the moon, but this one wouldn’t be the nostalgic kind, it would be a bitter memory forever etched in my mind and especially a negative moment in human history.
I have more to say but I am tired and fear that it would be repetitive.
For all those Americans feeling downcast with what has happened, keep your heads high, keep fighting for equality and respect in this world. My thoughts are with you and I am motivated to prevent what has happened in the United States of America, from it happening here in my own country.
Until next time.