Ever since Donald Trump’s election on Tuesday, my social media newsfeed has become a combination of posts of friends who were either outraged about the election or friends that are happy about Donald Trump becoming president. On the news, I have seen so many protests around the country.
Before I continue, let me say this: I am not happy with the results of the election either. I expressed my frustrations in a post on Wednesday entitled “The Fear Of What’s Next.” However, it makes me so upset to watch the protests going on. It makes me so upset to see people tearing each other apart, and blaming each other for what the results were.
As Americans, we have all of the rights that come with the First Amendment. We have the the freedom of speech. We have the freedom to peacefully assemble. And, if you do it in a way that is geared towards spreading love, not hate, then I think that is perfectly fine. I have seen countless Facebook statuses about someone’s upset feelings towards Donald Trump’s win, about their fear of losing Obamacare, birth control, and even the rights of those who are a minority, such as women, latinos, LGBTQIAA and African Americans as they are in jeopardy currently. I have seen rallies of many people coming together as they struggle with the anxieties of what the Trump administration might bring as well. Seeing this outburst has not only helped me learn so much about my friends on social media, but also helped grow a strong, tight knit community. And that is amazing.
With that being said, I have also seen so many articles about people who are criticizing the choice voters made to vote for Trump. I have seen fights breaking out online, statuses stating ‘if you vote for Donald Trump, then unfriend me’ and videos of violent protests breaking out. And, this makes me upset.
As Americans, we have the right to vote for who we think is best to rule our country. That choice can differ from person to person. For example, I may think Hillary Clinton is the most fit to lead this country. However, a classmate may see things differently, and think that a third party candidate or even Donald Trump may be the best fit for the them. They have the same rights as you do to vote for the candidate that they think will shape our country better and mold it into a better tomorrow.
And, we should not yell at them for that choice. We should not make them feel like they have to defend their decision. We live in a democracy, a world where there is a melting pot of ideas melding together to create a more diverse front. Every American has that right, no matter who they voted for. Everyone has a different point of view, based on their roots, their education and their background. And, we need to respect that.
Let me just say this, I am disappointed about Hillary’s defeat. I am scared about what the Trump administration is going to lead. I am scared for the women who will no longer have access to the many health services Planned Parenthood offers when Trump defunds it. I am scared for the children, whose parents who came into this country without documentation, and may have to face being apart from them. I am scared for my genderqueer best friend, whose marriage may no longer be legal by Trump’s standards because it is not the standard American family. I am scared, because the new POTUS is someone who calls women “dogs.”
Without a doubt, this campaign has been ugly. Donald Trump has said so many awful things about Hillary, and vice versa. In the aftermath of the election, I have seen that same amount of ugliness. However, this was not from the candidates, or Mrs. Clinton. This was from us.
Currently, half of the country is divided. In this time of turbulence, instead of dividing, let us unite. Instead of yelling at each other, let us listen. Instead of coming with an approach of hatred, let us instead express our emotions in a way that lets everyone’s frustration be heard, instead of ignore. Let us help those who are different, or a victim of Trump’s insults, whether they may be a woman, a gay male or a Latino immigrant. Let us love each other, no matter what candidate they voted for. Let us listen to why they thought that person was the best choice, rather then scream at them for picking the wrong one. Let us unite together, instead of divide apart.
Hillary Clinton’s campaign slogan was “love trumps hate.” And, I believe that she was right. Love trumps hate, no matter what side you are in, and we need to love each other now more then ever.
Please, spread love not hate.