Before I begin: Congratulations to Donald Trump on winning this democratic election.
There has been an insane uproar on all of my social media feeds about the election in the states. It seems that over night the perception of the whole world has changed. First of all: I am not happy that Trump is President. Neither would I have been with Hillary. I do disagree with many things Trump said in the past since many of them are sexist, racist or just plain stupid and not the behavior I would expect from a person in this position.
However: This is a prime example of how democracy works.
He was the underdog. Nobody took him seriously. The big talk and comedy shows joked about him on and on. It got so much that in the end it wasn´t even funny anymore. Especially hosts like John Oliver or Seth Myers bashed him relentlessly while basically ignoring Clinton and her wrongdoings quite often. We saw the same thing happening in many other countries as well.
I think he was elected for 3 main reasons:
First of all, the rural population in the U.S. feels largely forgotten in my opinion. It´s like the big hubs in the US dominate everything to the max while the guys who live in a small city in Minnesota for example are just “some hillbilly´s” from the country who nobody needs to take seriously. Pair that up with massive economical losses, high unemployment and bad educational funding and you have a barrel of black powder.
Secondly: Trump knows how to mobilize and engage people. He has shown countless times that he has a feeling for this. He polarizes, he is interesting and no matter if you hate or love him, you pay attention and discuss him. Because he´s so different from the other candidates which were just marionettes in a suit. “Trump tells it as it is.” is a sentence I read and heard many times over the last months. And that´s true, however weird or offensive his message was. He ran as himself, not someone he thought the people wanted to see. Bernie Sanders would have been the perfect counter candidate, an interesting guy with a fantastic agenda, who is also an amazing speaker. Unlike Hillary who is constantly trying to force herself to be who her advisers tell her to be. And that showed in the debates big time.
Third and most important: The Democratic as well as Republican party lacked backbone to the max. Nobody seriously opposed the candidates eventually, except Bernie Sanders who unfairly was crushed and kicked out of the race by Clinton and her minions. If he would have run I am sure this election would have ended differently.
That is the main issue I see with the US party system – To me it is absolutely astonishing how a country of this size and influence can only have two parties that run against each others every year. Germany, which is 1/4th of the population will have 7 major parties running for the next election. You have an actual choice of views, candidates and agendas. Be it as it may: My American friends will stay my American friends. If they voted for Trump. Fine by me. If they voted for Clinton. Also fine by me. Because THIS is what democracy looks like. You agree, you disagree but in the end you come together and make it work.
Do I seriously believe Trump will “end the world”, like I read on my FB and Twitter this morning? No way, that´s nonsense and fantasy babbling. Do I believe he will maneuver himself and the US into some outrageous situations and make foreign relations difficult or damage them? Absolutely.
But shall we never forget: The US and Europe are supposed to be friends, not enemies. And bashing and insulting people because of what they voted is in my opinion not only wrong but also highly anti-democratic. If even Hillary Clinton could give Trump a call and congratulate him one should also be able to accept the victory as fair and square.
Catch ya later,