Since Tuesday, the drumbeat has been pounding steadily demanding that Hillary Clinton supporters “accept” the will of the voters well, more accurately the will of the Electoral College. Donald Trump may be the nation’s President-elect, but in terms of Healer-in-Chief, he’s failing miserably.
After what is arguably one of the most heated presidential contests in history, he has uttered not a word to the country about coming together beyond a pro forma mention in his acceptance speech during which he said he would represent the interests of “all.” That’s feeling increasingly doubtful.
Not only hasn’t he stepped up to assure those who he insulted and bullied women, immigrants, minorities, Muslims, the LGBTQ community and others that he will stop insulting and bullying them, he hasn’t so much as lifted a finger to make any of us feel better, feel welcome, feel less fearful, or feel that he indeed represents our interests.
He hasn’t even called off his dogs, the people who on the day after the election felt empowered to paint Swastikas on storefronts and who held up “Make America White Again” signs. He remains silent as middle school kids chant “build that wall.” Not a peep when the KKK announced that it plans a Trump victory parade. You need more examples? Find them here. And if you want to know the impact, know this: Calls to suicide hotlines have exploded since he was announced the winner.
And through it all, the president-elect hasn’t said a word to us, those who did not support him. On the contrary, his silence, and his absence of a denouncement, fuel our fears. Maybe that’s been his plan all along.
There has not been a single apology, not a single call for his followers to stop committing hate crimes in his name. No, instead the calls have been for people like me to unify behind him. Well, I can’t. I cannot unify behind misogyny, homophobia, white supremacy, Islamophobia or the idea of erecting a wall to keep immigrants out. I can’t. I won’t.
But I do wonder, where is the statesman, the negotiator, the leader of the free world who understands you can’t just rule half a country? I want to know: Where is the olive branch?
Personally, I think he missed a big opportunity to mend not erect the wall that separates my ability to support him from the demands that I do so. With thousands of protesters marching right under his nose past Trump Tower, why doesn’t he just step outside his ivy tower and talk to us the us who didn’t support him? A three-minute stroll into the crowd with an extended hand and the words “I’m Donald Trump and I am proud to be your president. Give me a chance to convince you of that,” and I wouldn’t be writing this.
Instead, I sit here feeling very afraid.