I heard an interview last weekend with a conservative commentator — one who opposed Trump, actually — and he said smugly that “liberals are just making fools of themselves over Trump’s win in the election.” (Or words to that effect). So, I was thinking today of the “liberals” I know who have spoken to me about their post-Trump realities.
Among them are several women who work in our home as caregivers for my elderly mom. Most are immigrants; all are ethnic, racial or religious minorities. They tell me that among their family members there is talk of where to go if things get really bad in Trump’s America; or of possible deportation of friends, though they have young children born here. I’ve had caregivers tell me that, because I still display my Clinton/Kaine campaign sign in the front yard, they felt safe speaking honestly with me about what this election means to them. Many of their other clients are older people and Fox News is on all day in those homes. It pains me to think that these ladies, who with dignity and professionalism take care of people’s loved ones (and not for high wages), often have to endure hours of trumpeting of a political “victory” that is not just personally offensive, but legitimately raises fears for their future.
Other “liberals” have shared with me their fears of what’s to come under the Trump and GOP healthcare regime. These are friends who finally have decent health insurance thanks to the Affordable Care Act. They have serious medical conditions that require on-going treatment or surgical intervention — medical care made affordable for them only because of their ACA insurance. For some, the fear of losing access to necessary medical care raises real life or death fears. It’s heartbreaking.
On November 9, I woke-up to the reality that our election process, and many of my fellow citizens, put into the presidency an openly misogynistic, shameless, narcissistic, bullying, authoritarian, vindictive, impulsive, unqualified, mentally unstable person who invites hatred against ethnic and religious minorities. A saying has come to my mind many times since then: “The political IS personal.” How brutally true that is for many. So, yes, I am prepared to make a fool out of myself over that.
I know there are those who wish to give Trump a chance and are (it seems to me) willing themselves into forgetting everything that we learned about him over the course of the election: the scams he’s pulled, the ugly and aggressive words he’s blasted to rabid hordes, the countless lies he’s told. It is, in fact, uncomfortable to stay fully aware of who he is, especially now that inauguration day looms near. But please don’t let your discomfort lull you into complacency. We all need to continue to make fools of ourselves, loudly, for the sake of the many out there for whom this election may have devastating personal implications.
“When someone shows you who they are, believe them ….” – Maya Angelou
Don’t be like this silly bird. 🙂