I’ve taken a good amount of time to sit back and ponder about the results of the 2016 presidential election. It’s been over a year since I went to Ohio to see Donald J. Trump speak at his Ohio rally in hopes of gaining supporters to clench the Republican nominee. Back then, it seemed like a joke that I would never have to see become reality.
As I remind myself of the hateful comments he made on that day alone, I am reminded of the hate and violence he promoted throughout his campaign.
In Ames, Iowa, at a leadership summit back in July of 2015, Trump was discussing his views on Arizona Senator John McCain being a war hero. Trump stated that “He is a war hero because he was captured. I like people who weren’t captured.” This struck me as odd as Trump is in support of military veterans, yet made a polarizing remark such as this.
At a rally in Sioux City, Iowa on January 23, 2016, Donald Trump made a somewhat troubling statement about how secure his trust is with his voters. Trump used a theoretical situation to explain how he could do something bizarre, but would not lose voters. Trump told his crowd that “I could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot people and I wouldn’t lose voters.” In a country riddled with gun violence, this remark is way too dangerous to ignore.
Later in the election, following the release of a recording of Trump speaking about groping and kissing women without permission, the Republican presidential nominee dismissed his comments as “locker room talk.” Trump dismissed claims that would get any other person investigated. Trump said the comments were just words, playing into today’s rape culture. Writing off such remarks makes it seem like disrespecting women and making unwanted advances is something that every heterosexual guy talks about. This is just another dangerous remark made by America’s future president.
At a rally in November, Trump seemed to mock a reporter with a disability. The reporter is Serge Kovaleski, who has arthrogryposis, a chronic condition that limits joint movement. Trump tried to mimic the man as he stumbled over his words and threw his arms about in a derogatory manner.
These instances are just a few morsels of hate and disrespect that have played into the Trump campaign from beginning to end. So why do I bring all of this up?
As a minority, this worries me. It scares me. Maybe Trump won’t go through with all his proposed policies. Maybe he won’t carry out all the actions he promised to. But the comments he made along the way play into the hate and bigotry that many Americans are expressing while looking up to Trump. Having a president who disrespects women and people of color makes it seem perfectly fine for any American citizen to make those same hateful remarks. As a minority, I worry about the hate and judgment I will face the next four years. I am fearful of the ways my black brothers and sisters will be treated. I am afraid for my Muslim friends and the Syrian refugees I have come to know and love. I am fearful for the Hispanic and Latino community, being written off as drug dealers and rapists by Trump early in the campaign season. I worry about the LGBT community, sure to face even more discrimination than years past.
All of this bothers me. As a Christian, I can’t come to an agreement with those who voted for Trump. I hear the excuse that Trump is “pro-life,” but that is only partly true. Sure, Trump may be pro-life for the life yet to be born, but he is not pro-life for minority lives across America.
Trump does not show the love that a Christian should show. Trump does not represent the “Christia
n vote.” Trump is a man that lives off the mistreatment of others. He is a man who represents the dark past of America.
Don’t tell me that you love and support me if you voted for Trump. By voting for Trump, you voted against my rights. You voted against the freedom that so many people currently have in our country. You voted against the equal rights of the black community. You voted against the love that Jesus calls us to.
Do not condemn liberals for protesting this election. Do not condemn us for expressing our feelings and exercising our rights. We know we won’t change the outcome. We understand the next president has been chosen. But we can still express our discomfort. We can show that we don’t feel safe with hate and fear running our country. When I say that Trump isn’t my president, it means that he does not represent me. He does not represent the love and acceptance that I have fought so hard for. Yes, Trump won the presidency, but he didn’t win my respect.