“How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.”
― Anne Frank
I chose the title not because I wanted to drive traffic to my website, but because it best explains this post.
I’ve hated Trump from the very first time I heard about him last year. At that time, it did not seem that a sexist, racist, misogynist orange like him would actually be sitting in the world’s most powerful office months later. As women who’d been abused by him spoke up and tapes of him speaking such disgusting and derogatory thoughts about women surfaced, I became sure that after seeing how characterless and disrespectful this person was, no one would vote for him.
Because I believed that with the surge in the number of feminists and social activists defending POC and the LGBT community, no one would tolerate such a hateful man, let alone vote for him to be President. I believed the world had changed.
But I was wrong. Trump won.
I hated this man more and more everyday. I did not speak about any of it before, during or after the elections, because I thought I didn’t know much about American people and politics. I still don’t. But I’m writing this because Trump being president has to do with more than just politics.
It made me happy and sad at the same time when I read about the Women’s Marches all over the world – including Antarctica. Happy because despite so many people voting for Trump, there was still a greater number who did not support him. Happy because it was so good to see all the women marching together. I’ve seen how women fight against each other, blame the victims for being raped or assaulted or being attacked by acid. Here around me, I’ve seen very few instances of women supporting each other, even though what women are today is because of all that women activists did in the past for us. If I’m here today, writing this, it’s because of all the women who demanded the right to education. If I’m here today voicing my opinion, it’s because people have come to know that a woman’s voice matters.
Women supporting each other is important, because it is women who can raise their sons rightly, teaching them respect and love, instead of telling their daughters to come home before dark.
“We don’t need unity in theory, we need solidarity in practice.”
― Curious George Brigade
I was happy to read about the Women’s Marches because women of all ages turned up. Women with disabilities turned up. Old women in wheelchairs/ with walking sticks turned up. But I was happier when I saw men had turned up too.
Men have suffered because of gender inequality too. They cannot choose certain professions, they cannot express their emotions freely, they aren’t allowed to be vulnerable and weak when it’s perfectly fine to do so. But men have also been given more power because of gender inequality, so it gave me hope when they marched along with the women. Their support gives our fight against sexism and misogyny so much power.
The only reason I was sad to read about the Women’s Marches was because after around more than 200 years since women first started standing up for themselves, they’re still fighting. Science has progressed. Art has progressed. Everything seems to be going ahead, expect the irrational sexism and racism and homophobia and all kinds of hatred. They say there has been a change in the way people think, but I hardly get to see it anywhere. Every article on Buzzfeed, every post on Facebook, every thread on Twitter is a war zone between those who speak up against hatred and those who defend it.
Yes, people defend hatred. This is what the world has come to.
“Hatred does not cease by hatred, but only by love; this is the eternal rule.”
― Gautama Buddha
I may not be a citizen of the US, but it affects me that Trump is President because I know the ideas he supports are wrong. In no context can you justify any act of harassment or violence or abuse, more so when it is based on a part of the victim’s identity. Trump’s actions may not affect me directly, but I don’t see why I shouldn’t stand against what’s wrong. If we all waited to personally suffer hatred to go out and fight, the streets that were flooded with protesters would only see silent victims. No cry would be given sound. No slogan would hold any meaning.
It affects me that Trump is President not because of his policies but because of all that he has said against women and immigrants and the disabled. I’ve seen how rapidly suicide and LGBT helplines were shared on Instagram and Twitter as soon as the election results were declared, read reports of sudden increase in harassment of Muslims and women, saw videos of people crying because everything had become so uncertain and scary.
“Hate, it has caused a lot of problems in the world, but has not solved one yet.”
― Maya Angelou
It affects me that Trump is President because if there are people who support him, there are people (and in huge numbers) who are misogynists, sexists, racists, homophobics. There are people out there who think women are mere sex-objects, that two men marrying will somehow affect their lives, that a person’s worth is defined by the color of their skin, that the actions of some Islamic people defines every person of that religion. Even when history and science have proved them wrong. You cannot talk about inclusion when you think Donald Trump is right. I’m not comparing him to any previous president, any businessman or any human being in general. Trump is an exceptional example in himself. When people around the world are scared because a certain person is in power, you cannot deny there isn’t something wrong with him.
I do not know much about American politics and so I might not understand half of what Trump does while in office. But when he talks of women as if they were made for men’s sexual satisfaction, when he talks of building a wall across the US-Mexico border, when talks of pushing out immigrants from the country that was built by immigrants, I understand and care a lot more. Because if a powerful person says these things, those who think on similar lines gain power. They think their actions are justified. They become fearless. Sexism and racism are justified, so are rape and assault.
“We must always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented.”
― Elie Wiesel
It affects me that Trump is president because with every day as president-Elect and now as the President, he is giving rise to the problems the world has been fighting against. He has so much power that it seems like the entire world needs to stand up against him.
I don’t know the best solution to the problem, but I do know one way of defying him, one way over which he has no power: the people. It is in our hands, US citizen or not, immigrant or not, woman or not, disabled or not. We can love and support each other. When one is harassed or abused or victimized, we can stand up to protect them. We have our voices and he cannot take it away from us. We defy him, not through protests or marches, but through our actions, because there is only so much he can do to prevent people from loving each other.
“Be the change that you wish to see in the world.”
― Mahatma Gandhi
I don’t care if you’re offended by reading this. It’s my opinion and this is my blog, and I have the right to say what’s on my mind. So even if you’re a die-hard Trump supporter, I’m not going to apologize for what I’ve said here. If you don’t like it, feel free to block me.