From very early on in this election season, and especially since Donald Trump became the Republican presidential nominee, I’ve looked forward to the day when he would win the presidency and I could gloat in the smug faces of all of the Hillary Clinton supporters (and NeverTrumpers) who spared no occasion to assure America that Trump was a joke who had zero chance of winning.
On election night, however, as I watched Clinton’s campaign headquarters transform before the nation into something resembling a funeral or morgue, I resisted indulging in my earlier fantasies. It wasn’t just that I decided to be a gracious winner. I felt genuine pity for those millions who had been misled into believing by dishonest pollsters and Clinton’s media colluders that their candidate couldn’t lose. Being a Christian, I tried to place myself in their shoes and chose to do unto others as I’d have them do unto me.
I aspired to be a gracious winner. Far too many of Clinton voters, on the other hand, have been anything but gracious losers.
They’ve also proven to be vicious.
This is not new. Throughout the whole election season, particularly as Trump started sailing toward victory, their rental thugs have been revealing to everyone with a camera that it is the Democrats, not Trump’s backers, who have led the market on violence.
And as we see from the violent anti-Trump episodes (“protests”) that began to erupt in cities around the country within 24 hours of Trump’s election, things have not changed.
I confess: My earlier feelings of magnanimity and sympathy are giving way to anger. My anger, in turn, is on the verge of hardening into rage.
In the interest of full disclosure, the post-election fallout on the part of anti-Trumpers (I don’t know if it’s accurate to describe them as Hillary supporters) has had a personal dimension for me. While I am used to being in the trenches, my wife, Amy, is not. Neither had our seven year-old son yet had any exposure to the nastiness that politics unleashes in some people.
That changed this week.
It’s no secret that I had been arguing for a Trump candidacy since 2011. Way back then I forecasted that Trump’s run on the presidency could very well be a success. Amy, though, being a resolutely non-political animal, discusses politics with no one. This, though, didn’t stop a friend of hers—or an alleged friend—from insinuating that she’s a “racist” for having voted for Trump.
The thing is, my wife never revealed to anyone the name of the candidate she intended to support.
Here’s what happened:
The kids in Tommy’s elementary school, like kids in schools around the country, had mock elections on Tuesday. Following his dad, our son made it known to a friend of his, a girl who happens to be black and who expressed a liking for Clinton, that he instead liked Trump. The day after the election, Tommy suggested to his friend that they have their parents arrange a “playdate.” She replied that her mother didn’t want anyone who supported Trump in her home.
The good news is that Tommy seems to have quickly moved on from this. Still, because it did initially bother him, his parents were both saddened and more than a bit exasperated.
Upon relaying this episode on her Facebook wall, Amy received a private message from a young black woman with whom she worked the year before, a woman with whom she became pretty decent friends. Let’s call her “Dee.” The message was something to this effect: “Can you explain why you voted for a person who hates people who look like me? I find it hurtful.”
Bear in mind, before my wife received anything from her one-time friend, she was shocked and disappointed to read Dee’s election night posts. Dee referred to Trump supporters as “white racists” and used the term “AmeriKKKa.” However, as is her way, Amy refrained from commenting. I urged her to drop Dee from her friends’ list immediately. She wasn’t prepared to do that.
When Dee messaged her, I suggested that she ignore her. “Delete her!” I exclaimed. Admittedly, I was hurt and angry for my wife. I am accustomed to having these sorts of battles, but Amy is not. Still, even then, Amy patiently waited several hours until she could gather her thoughts before responding to Dee. Before she sent off her response, Amy read it back to me in order to insure that it struck the balance that she desired.
Amy noted, first, that she at no time shared her voting preferences with anyone. Thus, Dee was assuming, presumably on the basis that our son “voted” for the GOP nominee, that Amy supported Trump. Secondly, she reminded Dee that the identity of the candidate for whom she voted was none of her business. Amy was also quick to point out to Dee that she should attend to the boulder in her own eye before she proceeded to comment on the specks in the eyes of others, for it was her own posts that were profoundly hurtful and offensive.
Dee replied, “Ok.”
Then she deleted Amy from her friends’ list and posted an excerpt from Amy’s message—a private message, mind you—on her Facebook timeline. She did not, however, identify Amy by name.
This hurt my wife badly. She was in tears, gravely insulted that someone who she thought was a friend would impugn her character, and befuddled that anyone would think to do such a thing over an election choice.
As for myself, I am shocked but not surprised by any of this. That there is most definitely a racial dimension to this year’s election is undeniable. However, there is a racial dimension to virtually every election. The difference this year is that an unapologetic, politically incorrect, white, heterosexual man ended the reign of America’s (or, Dee, is it “AmeriKKKa’s”?) first black president while preventing a white “progressive” female from succeeding him.
More can be written on this at a future time. My point in writing this essay is to share how, within 24 hours of Trump winning the presidency, the backlash of the haters reached my home.
I can assure you, experiences of this kind go no distance toward facilitating “unity.”
They go a great distance toward both reminding us of why Trump won and signaling why he will win again unless this year’s losers do their part to overcome this division.