Wake Up Call
People may forever mark the 9th of November 2016 as the day that the world changed. The new 9/11 if you will.
However maybe we should accept the fact that the world had already changed and it has just taken this bombshell for us to realise it. The world is divided; and we didn’t even see it coming.
As a millennial, I see the world with a very liberal open mind. I don’t know any different. Last year, when I campaigned heavily for Marriage Equality in Ireland; it actually took me a long time to grasp what I was doing. The fact that we had to actually hold a referendum on something that I see as so basic was beyond me. It didn’t makes sense to me that people would be discriminated against based on who they loved. The idea that people had to ask, to beg for that… i still struggle to comprehend it.
I guess it makes sense that we surround ourselves with people who hold the same thought process as we do. Therefore, we begin to come around to the idea that we are in the majority in our beliefs. Sadly, this is completely incorrect. It took Brexit and Trump to make us see it; and I don’t think we can ever go back.
I used to consistently boast “this is 2016, things aren’t like that anymore”; but I was very very wrong. I thought we lived in a world that were open to new ideas and a world that strived for a equal, better society. But I was wrong. I truly believed that we were on the road to a bigger, brighter future. But I was wrong. While, what I thought was a majority, were moving forward there were still people that remained rooted in the past. People who do not believe in equal rights and people who do not treat everyone the way that they would wish to be treated.
Our system is seriously flawed if we do not have the capability to detect those who hold different beliefs to us. In the polls, and from what I was reading, I made the outlandish assumption that Hillary would win by a landslide. Just like I laughed at the thought that Britain would ever possibly leave the EU. If you are like me, and hold the same pro-equality belief system that I do, you may also be completely flabbergasted at the result.
There is an entire population in America that many of us have never been exposed too before. An entire army of people that actually agree with the things that Trump has said. We are so used to admiring the liberal Americans; the celebrities who are open minded - that we didn’t even consider batting our eyes at those who uphold what many would see as ‘backward’ views. How did this apparent majority escape our attention?
I’m no politician, nor am I American; but I think that my stance on this issue would be a pretty popular one. And if you hated Hillary - do you not think that there is something very wrong with the fact that these were the only two candidates to choose from? Now, America has a racist, homophobic, misogynistic bully with the keys to the White House. A man that believes that Climate Change is a hoax, that all immigrants are rapists and that they need to build a wall to keep the Mexicans out. Not only that, but his Vice-President, Mike Pence, believes that being gay is a condition that can be resolved with electrocution therapy.
You may think it is ridiculous that many non-Americans are taking this vote so to heart. You may think that it won’t affect you. Even if by some miracle we manage to escape from these 4 years unscathed by Trump; you need to ask yourself what this in it’s entirety means about the world. How divided are we really? Where do we go from here?
As a teenager, a generation that sometimes pretend that nothing affects them, I can say to you, that I am absolutely terrified.