As we watched the results come in on election night, 2016, the sinking feeling started early and bottomed out in what was, for me, a sleepless night. God– all of those creepy scenes from apocalyptic movies, roaming armed bandits, fascists, and the general disintegration of civil society– somehow now seemed as plausible as a Trump presidency. That kind of mind racing wore me out pretty fast, and, I knew, was not going to help me anyway. Like most everyone, I had to get up in the morning. The hounds are barking, but they aren’t at the door.
In less than ninety days, though, they will be. Not for me, but quite possibly for hundreds of thousands of young people currently protected from deportation under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) enacted by President Obama in 2012. This represents one of the many real problems that the Republicans (re= fascists) in control now face if they try to enact what they say they will do. They will soon discover a very unruly country to govern.
Hillary Clinton was a disaster for the Democratic Party. I saw it coming, though I did not predict she would lose to Donald Trump. I make no claims to clairvoyance. Hillary was the unfortunate albatross for a party that has abandoned the working class for at least a generation. The Democratic Party had been the go-to place for progressives, women, and minorities because it advocated for them– enough anyway– on civil rights issues affecting them. But in the world of neoliberal economics, money comes first. So unions faded into the background or disappeared entirely, and Right-To-Work states began to pop up all over the map. New jobs began to mean low-wage jobs. And where was the Democratic Party?
The Democratic Party is in ashes. Bernie is already scrambling to set up a new house. I do think there is hope there, because the economic message is there. And, for all of its faults, the Democratic Party embraces diversity and looks like the America that actually exists.
There are so many critiques of this election, my head is spinning with them. A lot of them are very nuanced and smart, and I like reading them. We still don’t know exactly how things will play out. I ran into my neighbors next door who were on their daily walk. We stood there and kind of shook our heads in dismay over the election. Bruce said, “Well, we’ll just take care of each other.” I loved that, because that’s what it’s all about.
Resist, organize and take care of each other.