(Warning: I get political here, but don’t worry, I’ll go back to normal posts soon.)
If I had to describe the feeling of watching the 2016 election results unfold in a slightly over-dramatic, self-important way, the best comparison for me would be To Kill a Mockingbird.
I’m talking about the court scene where the jury declared Tom Robinson guilty, and he was given a death sentence for committing a crime he so very clearly did not commit. I felt like Scout did in that moment, with the confusion, the disappointment, the injustice of it all. I didn’t, and still don’t understand how 60+ million people could vote for such an obvious Bad Choice. How they could turn away from a flawed, yet undoubtedly smart and qualified woman and instead vote for a man who, amongst other things, lied about muslims in New Jersey cheering at 9/11.
I give this example, instead of all the countless other awful, reprehensible things Adult Joffrey has said and done, because I think it’s one of the worst and it doesn’t get enough attention. The man went in front of a bunch of angry, gullible people, and he gave them an excuse to hate and discriminate against another group of people, people that he knew for a fact were innocent in this regard.
Also, and I feel like this should be focused on more, he has a very punchable face. Not at the Ted Cruz level of smug grossness, but he’s definitely up there.
But I have to remember that To Kill a Mockingbird ended on a hopeful note. (I think. It’s been a while.) And as Atticus Finch once said, “it’s always darkest just before the dawn.” (He did not say this.) So for the sake of my mental health, let’s focus on the bright side, shall we?
1) The next president’s going to seem amazing in comparison.
Literally all he has to do is not throw twitter tantrums at three in the morning, and everyone will think, “Damn, what a classy guy. So glad he won the 2024 election.”
(Too dark? I feel like that was too dark.)
2) We’re probably going to get at least one really badass woman out of this.
I’m talking Joan of Arc levels of awesome here, or someone like Susan B. Anthony. Someone who goes down in the history books as just an all around great person. Personally, I hope its Tammy Duckworth.
She’s an Asian American senator, who’s also a disabled veteran, and I hope she runs for president in 2020, because she’s already done and said some things that made me say, “hot damn that was cool.” Like during a midnight vote to repeal the Affordable Care Act, she said, her voice filled with emotion, “On behalf of the 1.2 million Illinoisans who will lose health insurance with this repeal of the ACA, and for all those with pre-existing conditions, I stand on prosthetic legs to vote NO.”
If you want to watch the video where all the democrats in congress fought and failed against the Obamacare vote a few weeks ago, here it is. I found it incredibly moving.
But to get back to Duckworth and why I think she’d made a great candidate:
- She literally lost her legs while fighting in the Iraq War, so it’s going to be tough for her opponent to claim she hates the military.
- “What was that? I couldn’t hear you over the sound of my awesome prosthetic legs, which I got from risking my life for this country.” —what I would say in a debate, if I were her.
- For the most part I approve of her voting record.
- She doesn’t have any email scandals that I’m aware of.
- She has a goofy, but likable name. It’s the type of name that sticks with you, and in the early stages of campaigning, name recognition is always important.
3) When bored, you can always play “Find the minority!” during Trump’s speeches.
It’s a depressing game, but it’s still a game, and games are fun. Whenever you see a crowd of his supporters on TV, look around for someone who isn’t white and see how long it takes before you find one. I played it during his inauguration the other day and the first black person I saw was actually, in fact, a horse. (I gave up after five minutes.)
Or you can play that drinking game where you take a shot every time he lies about an easily provable fact. You’ll be dead before the game ends, so get your arrangements in order first.
4) The Republicans have sort of lost the moral high ground.
I’m biased, as I’m sure you’ve noticed, but I struggle to see how the Republicans could possible continue calling themselves the Family Values party, or the Party of Personal Responsibility. I don’t think this has been the case since at least 2000, but it’s never been more obvious than it is now. They also shouldn’t be allowed to condescendingly call liberals “snowflakes,” considering that they just nominated the world’s whiniest snowflake as the leader of the free world.
Okay, so maybe this isn’t a good thing for any Republicans reading this, (sup guys), but they can rest assured knowing that they have a super-majority, so they don’t actually need the moral high-ground anyway. And if public support wanes, they can always just gerrymander some more, or maybe just keep on gutting the Voting Rights Act, as they’ve already done in several states. And they’ve successfully stolen a Supreme Court Justice, so they’ll be just fine.
(Man, being a Republican must be so nice right now. Maybe I should switch sides.)
5) No matter what happens, there’s no happy ending for Trump.
I think he ran for office with the idea that a) he wasn’t going to win, and/or b) that being president wasn’t actually that hard. I remember back in November hearing him say how surprised he was at just how big of a scope his new job entails, and I recall him making a rather unhappy face when he realized he’d won the election.
Trump’s going to be miserable with this job, and part of me hope he crashes and burns. That he resigns in disgrace with single-digit approval ratings and he goes down in history as an utter failure. Then we can all look back and say, “hey, remember that time Donald Trump was president? That was weird.”
The only way Trump does get a happy ending is if he does a good job as President, and in that case, we all win. In fact I hope he does so well I end up voting for him in 2020. Do I think this will happen? Nope. But never have I wanted to be proven wrong as much as I do now.
Though let’s be real. If it’s Duckworth vs Anyone, I’m choosing the Duck.