I think it’s safe to say that this country is divided right now. The campaign and election of Donald Trump, AKA President Pussy Grabber, to the highest office in the nation, has brought about a ton of lost Facebook “friends” for a lot of people, increased family infighting, and a daily onslaught of bitter back and forth and arguments on the internet between decent Americans and the Trump supporters who have poisoned the well of this great land. For a person like myself, who already has an inclination to engage in political discussions online, it’s not as noticeable of a shift. But for the average person, I think there has been a yuge increase in this type of adversity and discord.
This has all brought up the old debate about whether politics should get in the way of friendships, and whether people can retain their relationships even if they strongly disagree in that arena. I have seen memes floating around which self-declare that (the meme creator) is capable of disagreeing with others, without losing or sacrificing their friendship. While I think it is generally true that people should be able to “agree to disagree,” I think that what we have seen with the Trump campaign, and now presidency, has far transcended the boundaries of “normal” political discourse and engagement.
I probably don’t need to go through the laundry list of reasons why POTUS Pee-Pee is categorically unfit for the presidency at this point. We have all seen and heard what Trump and his cult of followers have brought to the table. He has cultivated and encouraged outright bigotry and racism, toxic xenophobia, degradation of women and the disabled, and advocated violence against those who oppose him. He invited a foreign government to interfere with our presidential election, and suggested that perhaps “2nd Amendment people” could do something about his presidential opponent. He is probably the most polarizing political figure in modern U.S. history. With Trump, things go beyond mundane disagreements such as how much of a social safety net we should have, or how much foreign aid we should give to any given ally. Instead, things have become about having or not having fundamental decency as human beings.
On top of all of this, Trump’s administration has been shameless in their “gaslighting” and blatant lies to the American public. Things that are obvious and documented, such as the relatively unimpressive attendance at Trump’s inauguration, are being called into question by Kellyanne Conway and crew as “alternative facts” as they attempt to promote an alternate reality for their delusional horde to believe in. It was the same when Trump mocked a disabled reporter. He later denied it, even though it’s on tape, and there are actually people who insist that the controversy was all a result of “biased media.” Not to mention all of the times Trump has been recorded saying something, only to later flat-out deny saying it. Or the recent revelation that Trump has no intention of releasing his taxes, even though he had promised that he would – and, to add insult to injury – Trump incorrectly speaks for the American public and says that they are not interested in them. The sad thing is, Trump’s remaining defenders are perfectly okay with being deceived this openly. They apparently don’t mind being psychologically manipulated by Trump and his administration.
When it comes to expressing opinions online, I actually think it is everybody’s civic duty to be vocal in opposing things like blatant and dehumanizing bigotry, hate and degradation. So much so, that people end up losing friends, if need be. Because remaining silent only serves to enable those that seek to strip away our rights, freedoms and dignity. Resistance starts with vocalizing opposition. Things like racism should be something that we frown upon, and there should be a consequence felt by those who choose to fill their hearts with hate. The way I see it, the kinds of people that would have an issue with me voicing opposition to those things, I honestly don’t want or need in my life. I have “lost” a few “friends” on Facebook since the campaign season started, which had happened only once before (that I had noticed.) But I don’t really feel any “loss” – rather, I feel like I am being the person I was meant to be, without resistance or static from individuals that have revealed themselves to be morally and ethically contemptible. I have also chosen to unfollow a few people because I was just tired of seeing their asinine pro-Trump bullshit. I simply don’t need that kind of ugliness or negativity in my life, and I think the world throws enough of that at me as it is.
I always come back to this picture that I saw a while back, during the campaign. It sums up why I don’t have any respect for the most ardent Trump supporters, which by now is pretty much anyone still standing by him.
These “forgotten people” (as they have come to be known) don’t give a rat’s ass about anybody but themselves. Why should anyone give them any respect? They spend all their time pledging allegiance to politicians and individuals that feel completely comfortable and content attacking and denigrating anyone that isn’t white, male and straight (or females that are inexplicably bound to them.) Sure, there are some minorities who for some silly reason support Trump, but they all subscribe to the white male patriarchal ideal of American culture. They bring no actual argument or thought process to the table – it’s “woe is me, immigrants take our jobs, blah blah blah, cry cry cry.” And it inevitably becomes deflected into “Obama this, Hillary that…” It’s pathetic. I have had countless arguments with Trump supporters online, and I have concluded that, at this point, they are unreachable. There is no point. I mean, when you have people who proclaim that they are proud to be “deplorable,” how are you supposed to reason with them? The level of discourse from almost all Trump supporters I now encounter daily amounts to little more than trolling. It’s “neener neener neener, we won, you lost, get over it.” No substance, no philosophical basis (other than “hey, we’re assholes”) and lately, not even acknowledgement of basic facts that can be seen and heard by our own eyes and ears (think “alternative facts.”)
I hope people on the right realize that this is far from over. They can expect what they have seen recently, with the historic women’s marches around the world, and then some, to continue as long as a despicable man-baby who was put into office through a questionable election is in power.