The feeling of nausea, of shame, and ultimately of sadness still lingers.
I thought we were better than this. 60 million people signed up for what Trump, Inc. was selling. A completely unqualified candidate, whose primary policy is one of exclusion; who has a well-documented history of bankruptcy and sexual harassment; the man who could not get a job in one of his own casinos is now at the top of the most powerful country in the world. And a plurality of voters put him there.
But for all of the rhetoric, the vulgarity and the nastiness, where we find ourselves is pretty straight forward: we now have a Republican administration in our President, Senate, and House. The new guy at the top may be a loose cannon, but at the end of the day, he is going to promote the interests of his peers, whose primary purpose is making money. And in a game that he is well-versed, there will be winners and there will be losers.
The winners will be the most familiar: the white establishment with money, who of course will end up with more money – and when you have the legislature behind you, the laws can stick for years after you are gone. Does anyone think there will be any move to “drain the swamp” when it was never really defined what that really meant?
The list of losers will not only be the poor, the elderly, and the marginalized; it will basically be everyone who doesn’t look like him, or agree with him. He is the 1% – and in Trump’s America, there are people on the inside and people on the outside.
The Republican Congress has wanted for some time to privatize Medicare – an easy item to sell on the heels of a reformed Affordable Care Act.
He will likely appoint a more conservative judge to the Supreme Court, but in the end, I don’t think he really cares about social issues until it affects him. If, in fact, Roe v Wade were repealed, the legality of abortions would shift back to the states to decide; those in the most conservative states, in the poorest of areas, will not have access to healthcare and doctors; a repeal would most severely impact those least able to deal with the situation they have found themselves in. “No one respects women more than me,” said Donald Trump – does anyone believe that, having removed access to a procedure that has been legal for 40 years, that he would provide complementary support/services for those women who are the greatest in need ?
But at the end of the day, those who will lose the most will be those who put him in the White House: the struggling steel workers; the coal miners; the most honest, hard working and decent people, who believed what he was selling. What they did not realize is that there is no seat at Trump’s table for the workers: they are out back so those inside can keep what they have without getting dirt under their nails. It is a familiar story, of the rubes being taken by the huckster from the big city. And they fell for it: hook line and sinker. It is easy enough to argue that folks simply did not like the alternative (Hillary & Co) or perhaps what they currently have isn’t working very well for them – but at some point, they are choosing FOR something – and that is where they got swindled.
I did not sign up for Trump’s America. It turns my stomach to reflect that he was ushered in on a platform that is a repudiation of the ideals that this country was founded on: of tolerance; of equality; that if you work hard, you can make a better place for yourself. I expect the country will survive a Trump Presidency – but we will not be better off for it.