2016 Presidential Election: The Aftermath
No words can express what I truly feel.
Watching the votes being counted last night made me increasingly apprehensive. I was in utter shock. I never once expected to see any competition from Trump. Everything I thought I knew was being flipped on its head.
Eventually I fell asleep. Hoping with all of my might that when I awoke the tides would have turned. That the remaining states would come in for Hillary and the nightmare would be over.
I woke at 7am and checked the news. And my worst fears were confirmed.
Since then I've felt a weight, a deep uneasiness that can't be shaken.
All of this, and I'm not even an American.
I live in Toronto. Why should I care? What impact does the POTUS have on my life?
Unfortunately, a substantial one.
First of all, I have many dear friends who live in the United States of America. I am afraid for them. For the women, for those in the LGBTQ+ community, for the many of them who aren't white. What does this mean for their rights? For their freedom? For their lives?
This fear cannot be overstated.
But it's more than that.
I'm afraid for myself.
I'm afraid for the entire world.
Will Trump's influence cross the border? Inspire bigotry and hate in my beloved country?
Toronto is one of the most diverse cities in the world. As I rode the streetcar home from work, I looked into the faces of people from all walks of life. And what I saw broke my heart. They all had the look of someone whose spirit has been broken. They all looked afraid.
As I walked home in the dark I wondered; will violent crime go up? What about sexual assaults? Am I safe?
I hate this deep fear that has come over me, and I hate the man who has caused it.
What will we do know?
How will we help those Syrian refugees in need of protection?
What will happen to the millions of immigrants who now call the USA home?
How far will we turn back the clock on women's rights?
What new level of racism and intolerance will be reached?
How many more members of the LGBTQ+ community will die?
What will become of our Earth when the leader of the number one emitter doesn't believe in climate change?
How will we protect ourselves against a military many times our strength, if we must?
What will happen to our economy?
These questions spin around in my head with nowhere to go.
Many Americans made their decision based on one thing: what they wanted. Not once did they consider how their actions will surely effect everyone.
We all have to live in this world together.
But what will our world become?