I know, I know. *already shaking my damn head*
After much deliberation, I’m adding my opinion of the 2016 US election to the growing pile. At this point, you’re probably even more sick of it than I am, and won’t want to keep reading.
I don’t blame you. But hang on for a moment longer.
I’m not here to make a list of everything wrong with Donald Trump – you’ve already been there, done that, and bought the T-shirt.
I’m here to set a few records straight, because as a former American living in Canada, I’ve been getting some inquiries:
“How is anything Trump even says sounding good to Americans??”
“Are evangelicals *really* the majority of his voters??”
They deserve some answers, and even though I’m just one woman with little to no understanding of how politics works, I’m here to share what I see.
1. Many American people suffer from a major spirit of poverty.
I’m not just talking about poor and homeless people, which it sadly has plenty of – I’m talking about people who have enough, but don’t know it. With some of the largest records in credit card debt, workaholic standards, food waste, welfare, obesity, environmental hazards and privilege in the world, Americans are drowning in the pool of Too Much & Not Enough. And the fear that one day everything they hold dear will be taken away from them is firmly in the driver’s seat.
2. Many American people have been blaming immigrants and citizens of different skin colours alike for the state the country is in, for years.
Most of us can admit, looking back, that the whole enslavement of black people leading up to the Civil War was pretty wrong. (In fact, the enslavement of any people group in any point of history is pretty wrong.) We’re thankful for people like Abraham Lincoln who helped abolish that law; we remember his assassination still.
So why are the KKK still in action? Why is the Confederate flag such a sacred cow that no one had better speak against? Why are people being shot down in the streets daily because of how they look?
Because you can abolish a law, but it doesn’t change a person’s heart. Your mom can *make* you apologize for punching your brother, and you can say it well enough to appease all parties involved, but maybe your fingers were crossed and you can’t wait to punch him again when no one’s looking – because only you know how much the little punk is really asking for it.
There’s a movie from the late 90’s called American History X. It’s focused in L.A., on the gang wars between multiple races and a white supremacist neo-Nazi group, and two brothers caught in between.
It’s disturbing, eye-opening, horrifying, violent – and I believe it should be required viewing for every university-age person on the planet.
It has challenged me multiple times, seeing how subtly deep the levels of racism go, mixed with a prominent attitude of “I’m a good, hardworking white American, so if anything bad happens to me, it’s definitely the fault of that guy over there! America was so much better before people like him came here.”
3. Many Americans identify as Evangelical or Christian in census and survey, without even realizing what those words imply.
I mean, you’re not an atheist or a pagan or *shudder* a Muslim, right? Your hardworking, white American ancestors that *ahem* emigrated over on the Mayflower raised you better than that. And you definitely were in church at least twice this year, so put a little ✔ next to that Evangelical box and you’re good til next time.
4. And sometimes, in a perfect clusterf*ck, all of these attitudes collide in the same people.
They are the ones voting for Donald Trump.
And why not? Finally, after EIGHT YEARS of having to deal with a president who’s black and probably secretly a Muslim, here comes a successful white guy who is promising you more money and less immigrants – all under the banner of your Evangelical flag. He gets you. He knows what you need, and he isn’t afraid to speak it out boldly, like a kid in a candy store who’s never heard the word “no.”
Except, PSYCH! He owns the candy store, and now you can never leave because he’s going to feed you sugar until you die.
Whether he completely believes everything he says or not, he knows you’re ripe for the picking.
All of it bums me out, but highest on the list is how the label of Evangelical has been dragged into it.
JESUS WOULDN’T VOTE FOR DONALD, MMKAY?!
Somewhere deep down, I’m sure Jesus loves Donald as much as he does the rest of us, but even he has to admit the man is batshit crazy.
Jesus wants a government of justice and peace for ALL, not just the hardworking, white American. His heart breaks every time one of his children is gunned down in the street again, no matter what color their skin is. He designed that skin. He knows every scar inside and out, and he says you are enough.
That’s what I believe with my whole heart; that’s the Jesus I know.
But if you don’t know that, then it makes sense that you would see the label Evangelical Christian and automatically brace yourselves to meet another asshole like Trump.
And sometimes, honestly, we are. But some of us are trying our hardest to show the difference.
I hope you see it, I hope it gives YOU hope, and I hope that the next 8 months will go by quickly and painlessly.
Goodness, can I have some fries and gravy with that cheese? Canadian OWT.