Don’t be surprised Donald Trump won the White House. You acted surprised when he swept the Republican primaries. But deep down you knew he was going to fare better than fupa lord Chris Christie or water sippin’ Mark Rubio in the West Virginia primaries. Yet you feigned this shock. This disingenuous disgust like “No! Not my America.”
Well sadly, that is your America. The America where 77% of adults believe in fucking angels and at least one of your uncles casually used the N-word at Thanksgiving. And these prized hogs of democracy came out in deplorable droves in their Hoveround wheelchairs to elect Donald J. Trump to be the next president of the U.S of fuckin’ A. FOX News actually became a human and your uncle that re-posts transphobic Milo memes on Facebook made damn sure FOX News won the election.
Or wait… the election is rigged, right? No. Trump won. It’s okay. Democracy works. Life isn’t House of fuckin’ Cards. I remembered.
But you already knew this would happen. You already knew a lot of people were like your uncle that shouts “LOVE IT OR LEAVE IT” when faced with an opinion he disagrees with. You already knew there were people out there that had HILLARY FOR PRISON sticker on their Ford Ranger with a busted clutch. You must have known that 40% of citizens don’t believe a woman should be president, That 77% of America is white. That 83% is Christian. And that 99% of Americans own at least one TV. You must have known that Donald Trump — a reality show celebrity with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame who promises manufacturing jobs and a country where it’s okay to be a little prejudice against Muslims and Mexicans — was a real possibility.
You must have been privy to the uphill battle Hillary Clinton would face. After fighting a bloodying primary that (according to Wikileaks) was pretty much rigged from the start, Hillary “broke the glass ceiling” but jagged shards got stuck in her pantsuit and her dirty laundry never really had a chance to hang out and dry. Even though Bernie was “sick and tired of hearing about her damn emails,” the rest of white America wasn’t. You couldn’t be so naive to think that the director of the FBI doesn’t have a vested interest in electing the “law & order” candidate. Or that the media doesn’t have the ability to distract large swatches of uneducated voters with sensationalized headlines and trumped up national security threats.
Hillary was a shitty candidate. Yes, she’s qualified as FUCK. But qualifications aren’t what get people to the polls. It’s why a young black senator from Illinois named Barack Hussein Obama could beat a fucking P.O.W only a few years after 9/11. It didn’t matter if the guy’s middle name was Hussein. He created a grassroots revolution. People felt proud to cast their ballots for the first black president. It felt like you were making history. Sadly, the whole “electing the first female president” thing kind of wears off when you’re backed by Wall Street elites that have bankrupted Main Street. When your party pulled strings for you to be the nominee. When you’re arguing with a man who believes in “much worse than waterboarding” over who supported the failed Iraq War. Clinton could never really get the ghosts of Barry Goldwater and Monica Lewinsky out of her closet. She was viewed as unfavorably by the American people as a man who uttered the phrase “grab them by the pussy.” Don’t tell me Hillary Clinton’s qualifications outweighed her baggage.
In an alternate fucking reality that we all can’t seem to wake up from, Trump created the same groundswell as Obama in 2008 this time around. He created the movement. He rallied the part-time clan members drinking at your local Moose Lodge. He engaged the unemployed coal miners who only satisfyingly climax watching Vanna White on The Wheel of Fortune. And he gave a fucking microphone to that one fucking uncle who is always being creepy as FUCK to your girlfriend at Christmas dinner. That is the revolution we are left with on November 9th. The alt-right has become the hippies of 20-fucking-16. We knew America was racist, don’t act so shocked. But I’m not sure we realized it was this sexist. How could we have been so blind to not see the splinter in our own eye?
THIRD PARTY: THE WASTED VOTE
Don’t blame Jill Stein. She isn’t why you can’t have your first female president. The Green Party just validated the Bernie or Bust voting block who couldn’t “sell-out” and support $hillary. Stein was the feel good vote. She gave people the option of participating in democracy without having to sell their soul to the oil lobby or silently consenting to the myriad war on terror.
Not only did it allow roughly a million additional “I Voted” sticker selfies to clutter your Instagram feed, a vote for the green party was a protest. Not in the “WE’RE HERE AND WE’RE QUEER” kind of protest you’re used to on the quad of your local college campus. This is more of a political temper tantrum. A defiant refusal to entertain the two-party duopoly while also admitting you don’t understand how voting or the electoral college works. But whatever helps you sleep at night. This protest obviously didn’t do shit. But stop taking third party votes and adding them to Hillary’s count in order to justify your disbelief in the results of this election. Clinton wasn’t somehow owed those votes. They were already lost when the democratic establishment sided with everything that is wrong with a bought-and-sold political system. Democrats put their faith in oligarchy while the people begged for economic and social justice like peasants asking the royalty to loosen their purse straps.
As hard as it is to admit, Julian Assange wasn’t just trying to throw the election for Russian investments or whatever bullshit Podesta cooked up with his creamy risotto. Wikileaks was showing you that your “liberals” aren’t so god damn liberal after all, America. They acted as the black mirror. In reaction, Hillary Clinton supporters jumped to McCarthyism. It was more convenient to abandon the cause of transparency and honesty in politics and blame Putin, than it was to admit that your candidate was kind of shady. This further created a rift between the center-right democrats who like Dianne Feinstein and the young democratic socialists who like Elizabeth Warren.
It was no fluke that Bernie Sanders won 23 primary contests. But, again, you saw this coming. He woke people up in the same way Obama did in 2008, but the DNC already picked their pony early on in the race. They weren’t going to allow some kinda-Jewish, kinda-atheist guy to let the young leftists of America know that socialism is that fix they wanted. Not this watered down Democratic party bullshit that masquerades as liberalism in the US. Obama bombed twice as many countries as Bush, but only one was honored with the Nobel Peace Prize. Bernie reminded us that our left wing ideology was on auto-pilot and after gay marriage became a federal right. We stopped taking to the streets for social justice after Obamacare was enacted. When the first lady of an impeached president became the establishment’s choice for the democratic nominee, we all shrugged and said “meh, I guess we’ll go with what we got.” It’s cool Tim Kaine speaks Spanish and all, but he doesn’t exactly look like a guy you’d exchange Twitter follows with at an #NoDAPL rally. It didn’t feel revolutionary voting for Hillary Clinton. Maybe it didn’t even feel that revolutionary voting for Jill Stein or writing in Bernie Sanders. But for many people, it did feel revolutionary voting for Donald Trump.
I must also add that Gary Johnson ran for president. I think he was a libertarian, but the Ron Paul guys really never got on board. His entire candidacy will be canonized by the stupid fucking look on his face when he uttered the words “and what is Aleppo?” Fuck you if you voted for him. You’re a dumbass. Even his own vice-president Bill Weld thought he was a jackass. Wash that Guy Fawkes mask, you fucking smell like Cheetos, jizz and your mom’s cavey ass basement.
But now with Donald getting the keys to the White House, you may be pointing the finger at third-party voters. News flash! They’re not your enemies. You should have won them over. You should have had their support. The DNC fucked up. You fucked up. You can’t fault someone who voted third party. They voted their conscious. You just voted against a neo-fascist, misogynistic, scumbag who owns a string of failed real estate ventures and hates brown people.
I’M MOVING TO CANADA
Don’t move to Canada. Don’t move to Mexico, or New Zealand, or Ireland, or some deserted island in the South Pacific. America has had a rowdy 240-year history, but we always pull through. We always fight back in the face of adversity. Just because our neighbors to the north have universal health care and the most adorable way of saying “sorry” and “about,” it doesn’t mean you should apply for citizenship. American political structures ebb and flow. For every step forward we take, it seems we take two steps back 4-8 years later.
Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act in 1964. It was one of the most important pieces of social justice legislation in our nation’s modern history. It desegregated schools and public places and allowed America to slowly start to crawl out of the Jim Crow Era. But just 4 years later, the “silent majority” rose up and the “law and order” Republican Richard Nixon won the election. Does that sound familiar?
The election of 1968 was very similar to 2016 in many ways. LBJ decided not to run after poor poll numbers in an early primary against anti-Vietnam War candidates like Robert F. Kennedy and Eugene McCarthy. He passed the torch to his hawkish vice-president Hubert H. Humphrey, disenfranchising the anti-war left and creating a tumultuous primary election. The Democratic National Convention was marred by brutal crackdowns of protesters by police. This almost became symbolic of the suppression anti-war democrats felt when the DNC ultimately chose Humphrey to be at the top of their ticket. Much like 2016’s primary, the shady establishment dealings of the democratic party fractured the left’s core support, handing over the electoral college to the Republicans who promised to reign in the radicals and “the others” and the dope smokin’ hippies to restore conservative American values again. That’s why we were left with “I can’t believe Nixon won, I don’t know anyone who voted for him” in the 70s and “Holy shit, Donald Trump is president” in 2016. This isn’t new for America.
However, not all doomsday scenarios end in a bomb shelter with John Goodman. Despite what seemed like a step back for America, Nixon’s presidency in the late 60’s / early 70’s gave birth to the anti-war, pro-legalization, left-wing Wood Stock generation that sparked a national dialogue around topics of race, sex and religion. That progressively liberal movement of counter-culture aggression against the war machine, the man, the pigs, was what made Obama’s 2008 presidential campaign possible. It’s the same renaissance spirit that can make the 2020 elections historic, except this time for the right reasons.
Now, the real work starts. Time to build. Time to plot. Time to make change and seek a way to become organized again. Time to be revolutionary and not let democrats be the party of the status quo or of perpetual war or of Wall Street or of Anthony Weiner’s dick pics. As liberals, we have no one to blame but ourselves. Trump came from the shit-stew of racist, working class white America and bit into the Achilles Heel of democracy. His supporters took a look at the Republican party and said “nope, that doesn’t reflect me.” They blamed NAFTA and globalization on why they lost their jobs. They blamed Mexicans and Muslims and Blacks for crime. They molded the party of small government to be a party that would support building a billion dollar wall across multiple state lines using eminent domain. Now the GOP looks like them. The Republicans are a reflection of the basket of deplorables who now have a reason to wear their favorite white sheet and the conservatives who silently nodded while their party adopted extremely far-right ideologies into their official platform.
What will WE make the democratic party look like? Right now, its image is tattered. It’s worn out like Obama still promising to shut down Guantanamo Bay. We are splintered on the issues between age groups, genders, and races. We lost middle America. We lost the radical left. But we have an opportunity to bring everyone’s voices to the table and focus on the future, or whatever is left of it after one term of President Trump.
I watched the last of the news I could handle for the night as Donald Trump offered his half-assed victory speech, awkwardly thanking the same RNC establishment that he ran his entire campaign in opposition to. He went down the line of his daughters and his son’s wives and Omarosa from Celebrity Apprentice kissing their cheeks and doing that awkward thumbs up to the camera. As he gave one last shit grin to the American people, “You Can’t Always Get What You Want” by The Rolling Stones began to blare from the speakers. Maybe Trump wasn’t what we wanted, but he was what we needed to wake up. The revolution begins today.
BY EVAN PONTER