Monday, November 14, 2016
WITHIN CITY LIMITS: Episode XIII, This Isn’t the Article I Expected to Write.
By Nick Vaughn, Guest Columnist
I stood in the ballroom of the JW Marriott in Indianapolis on November 8th. It was a long and winding road from campus that luckily provided service so I could stay updated on the US Senate and House races. That was where the real battle would be fought, I had thought. I put in a ton of hours over the summer as well as over the course of my first semester of college to make sure that Congressman Todd Young would beat Evan Bayh. I was tracking the early results as they came in and I was a tad perplexed. To be running against someone like Bayh, I thought the early results were odd. I wasn’t sure what to make of it. Young jumped out to a 10% lead and never looked back. Then Eric Holcomb won and then Jennifer McCormick won and before I knew it Donald Trump was the projected winner of Florida. What was going on?
I am still processing what occurred on Election Day as well as the events that have followed. I never thought in a million years I would see Donald Trump as President-Elect. I knew Hillary Clinton was unpopular but I never knew that it was to this magnitude. Clinton must feel lower than Walter Mondale. Of course, a blowout probably hurts much less than a close defeat (I can attest). Clinton simply dropped the ball. Sure, she can blame this on FBI Director James Comey’s letter to Congress that they were alerted to new emails and they needed to check them out, but he did send another letter that said they were all hunky dory. This race was Hillary’s to lose and she lost it. She simply underperformed. She was 100,000 votes behind President Obama’s 2012 total in Wisconsin and the voter demographics were certainly not in her favor. Further still, Trump somehow garnered 30% of total minority votes which was enough to
put him over the edge while performing 1 point less than Romney did among white voters in 2012.
Now we see protests of the election (we would have either way). The peaceful protests we see today as a result of Trump’s victory could have very well been supplemented with violent protests, killings, possibly even lynchings if he had lost. In fact, the Trump advocates’ response to these protests are for the protesters to get over it. Some have even called them cry babies and they just need to get a job. This total hypocrisy is absolutely astonishing (though not unexpected) and shows the blinding effects Trump’s divisive rhetoric have had on people throughout this election cycle. Former Mayor of New York Rudy Giuliani even got in on the absurd bashing of protests claiming that these protesters are “professional protestors” that were hired by the DNC to cause riots after the election results.
While Trump has toned down his rhetoric since winning, his advocates and supporters are still in campaign mode. This type of rhetoric Trump used to glide into victory has caused more destruction than even his lack of discipline and discernment could as Commander-in-Chief. Sure, a President Trump could be a hot head and lack the proper judgement that would cause us to fall head first into war, however, I would argue he has done something far worse. Donald Trump has caused people to hate each other. People who are separated only by meaningless things like party identification or race or ethnicity. We have made a complete about face from Martin Luther King Jr.’s wise words of “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.”
So, I would ask you to take action over the next four years. Not obstructionist action but instead a objective support/check and balance combo as Trump ascends to the Oval Office. What’s done is done and there isn’t any going back. While I wholeheartedly understand the “He is not my president" sentiments, however, he has to be your president. For the sake of stability he must be our president. Donald Trump has already begun to tone down his rhetoric and his outlandish policies are no longer on the forefront of his agenda. Let’s be hopeful. By the way, next week I plan to dive into our local results. Until then, here is the quote of the day: “If we cannot now end our differences, at least we can help make the world safe for diversity.” - John F. Kennedy