Editor’s note: I once had a couple of million regular readers, but I sense those numbers are down by a few hundred thousand, thanks in part to my recent stream of politically charged material. I just can’t seem to help myself, so I’ve decided to seek some outside assistance. Voices is a new occasional series in which Americans express their feelings in the wake of the presidential election and what many perceive to be a drastic change in course for America, and not for the better.
By ERIC LINTON
As the unbelievable vote returns rolled in on election night, I was at first oddly calm. Maybe numbed by the absurdity of it all, maybe hardened by decades in the news business, I didn’t scream or cry. Unlike my younger friends who were enacting their freakouts in real time on Facebook, I had lived through Nixon, Reagan and Dubya, and I’m still here.
Yet Trump clearly is of a different order of danger. Spectacularly lacking experience, mental stability, intellect or even the pretense of abidingby social norms, he is impossible to imagine as chief of state. And yet it seems he will be.
My disbelief at the result soon turned into fury — at theDemocrats for nominating a candidate so compromised and vulnerable and out of touch that she could lose to this cretin. I don’t know if Bernie Sanders would have defeated Trump, but I think a blank space with the words “any Democrat” would have. Some people, especially women, may have voted for Clinton with genuine enthusiasm — I’m sure someone did — but for me it was always a joyless and begrudging vote. But I had no alternative: Gary Johnson is an idiot and Jill Stein is crazy or worse. I anticipated that the national popular vote margin would matter in case Trump refused to accept defeat. (How much more it matters now!) So I voted for a candidate I did not care for in a state she was sure to win.
Regardless of her platform, which was fine if she had any intention of abiding by it, Hillary Clinton to me personifies the smug, insulated, incestuous global elite that fancies itself to be a meritocracy. This is the party of Martha’s Vineyard and the Hamptons, of Cher and Barbra Streisand. This circle is so inbred that now there are rumors they will clear a House seat inWestchester County for Chelsea to run for in 2018. They have the political instincts of the late-period Bourbons and Romanovs. If that sounds like Trumpian language, so be it.
Since the Democrats insisted on anointing a candidate who could not credibly challenge Trump on his rampant corruption, or even his sexual predations, we are about to get an idiot child emperor surrounded by rival factions of greedy and extremist courtiers. I don’t know whether to fear more the medieval theocrat Pence or the aspiring fascist Bannon. I do believe that if Paul Ryan is able to get his lunatic Ayn Rand agenda, destroying Social Security and Medicare, past Trump’s desk, there will be blood in the streets. Maybe Congress won’t go Democratic but Communist — if we still have elections by then.
In this dire situation, I am heartened to see that most of my friends, after a few days of hysteria and panic, are now talking about solidarity, mutual aid, resistance and fighting back. Maybe people are indulging grandiose fantasies about joining the underground. But that may indeed become necessary.Would you like to add your voice to the Voices series? My contact information is listed under the About Me link at the top of this page.