November 8, 2016. That date is one to go down in history. The day that our “united” nation was exposed for how divided it actually is. Donald Trump won the Presidential election against Hillary Clinton causing millions of different reactions, but the most dominant ones were happiness from his supporters and fear from Clinton’s supporters.
Why were millions of people in fear due to the result of the election? There are many reasons but to make a long story short, Donald Trump is the minorities worst nightmare. Throughout his whole campaign, he did nothing but disrespect, degrade and discriminate against minorities. Trump knows who his supporters are and he capitalized on their hatred for minorities as a tactic to win. He continuously demonized minorities, especially Mexicans and Muslims, for more than a year. From promising to build the wall between America and Mexico (and making Mexico pay for it) to banning Muslims from entering the U.S., Trump’s campaign has fueled the rise of racial tension between white Americans and American minorities.
White nationalism is on the rise and due to that, many minorities have experienced hate crimes. Since his win in November, hate crimes against minorities have increased throughout the country. In New York City, the rate of hate crimes against minorities have spiked. “The police department revealed today that the city has witnessed a 115 percent increase in bias crimes since President-elect Donald Trump triumphed over Hillary Clinton last month….” (NYPD Reports ‘Huge Spike’ in Hate Crimes Since Donald Trump’s Election). Most of the crimes are targeted towards Muslims and Jewish people. Many people are living in fear; they are afraid that they’ll be next on the victim list due to the hate Trump helped expose. He may not have directly told his supporters to attack and hate on non-white Americans, but he knew how deeply rooted the racism is in this country. He knew that the majority he was speaking to felt a certain way when it came to minorities. While he spoke about banning Muslims, building the wall and about terrorist groups, he knew about the reaction he was getting from his supporters. He knew of the reports of increased white nationalism in the country during his campaign. “Make America Great Again?” His agenda was “Make America White Again,” point blank.
After his win, many Americans didn’t know how to feel or even what to say. Many of them, like myself, were speechless. How could a businessman, who has no government experience whatsoever, win the Presidency let alone RUN in a presidential election? How is that possible? How did America allow a bigot, who spoke nothing but ill of minorities his entire campaign, to even reach the finals and beat a well known politician who has been working in the government for years? Sexism and racial prejudice are both prevalent in this country and it showed on the early hours of November 9th.
I saw many different reactions within my community. My neighborhood is predominately white and they are all Trump supporters. Of course, they were happy with his win but I couldn’t help to notice how they, like many of their fellow Trump supporters, did not care for why Hillary supporters were upset. We were not upset that she lost, we were upset that a hateful bigot won and is the future President of our country. He is potentially dangerous and to make matters worse, the people he is appointing to work with him are well known racists and anti-LGBT politicians.
Many minorities I know cried at the outcome of the election. They are fearful of what the future will hold. Having Trump as President will mean there will be many setbacks to our society. My Mexican friends are scared of having their family separated soon. With his promise of deporting millions of undocumented immigrants, the reality is that many minorities, including Mexicans, will lose some family members. My Muslim friends are scared from the increased scrutiny and harassment they get in public for wearing the hijab. My LGBT friends are scared of the setbacks they’ll have to face from the advancements they’ve made so far in society. Trump’s Vice President-Elect, Mike Pence, is well known for his discrimination against LGBT citizens. Pence supports conversion therapy and has advocated for public spending of it in Indiana. According to an article I was reading, Mike Pence’s Record on Reproductive and LGBTQ Rights Is Seriously Concerning, in his 2000 campaign run for Congress, he had stated, “Resources should be directed toward those institutions which provide assistance to those seeking to change their sexual behavior.” Pence also opposes same-sex marriage and in that same campaign in 2000 he also stated, “Congress should oppose any effort to put gay and lesbian relationships on an equal legal status with heterosexual marriage.” Many women I know that were against Trump are also scared. Trump’s sexism against women was exposed in the election yet many white women still voted for him. However, the ones that are anti-Trump also fear Mike Pence. He is against pro-choice, thus taking away a women’s right to decide what do with with her body. Rape victims will be forced to keep the baby they never wanted in the first place and will be reminded of the event that hurt them. “I long for the day that Roe v. Wade is sent to the ash heap of history.” Not only that, but Pence has supported bills to defund Planned Parenthood and has voted against fair pay for women and minorities.
Right after the election, many Americans protested in many cities including NYC, Philadelphia, Chicago and Los Angeles. People who felt that their safety was being threatened by Trump filled the streets chanting, “Not my President,” “hey, hey, ho, ho, Donald Trump has got to go,” and “No Trump, no KKK, no fascist USA.” The young adults in this country are determined to make a change and make sure that Trump’s racist, sexist and ignorant views don’t impact the future of this country anymore than it already has.