The tribe has spoken, and America has said “You’re hired!” to Donald Trump. Yes. The Donald is America’s 45th president. If you’d told me that one day, the guy whose main function was to look constipated and fire people on The Apprentice would become President of the United States of America, I would have laughed you into oblivion. But no. He won. He actually won not just by the skin of his teeth, but by a margin wide enough to make America’s wishes clear. I was expecting a repeat of the hotly contested Philippine Vice-Presidential race, but Hillary Clinton conceded and there will be no calls for a recount. It’s the American Dream come true: anyone can be president!
My reaction to Donald Trump is visceral. The way he looks bugs me. The orange skin, the small, pale mouth, the borderline inappropriate trophy wife, the weird hair… to go from the smooth, suave, coolness of Barack Obama to the visual riot that is the Donald gives a body whiplash. This is the guy who’ll represent America? Melanie Marquez says we should not judge others “because [they are] not a book,” but science has proven that humans are programmed to respond more positively to attractiveness.
I’ll be honest – I didn’t really listen to either of their speeches while they were stumping, so my opinion is based on very shallow things like Trump’s appearance, a few hours of The Apprentice, the book Hard Choices, the story behind Hillary’s top aide Huma Abedin and her philandering idiot of a husband and of course the brouhaha over Clinton’s use of a personal email server and the allegedly shady dealings of the Clinton Foundation. Voters were pretty screwed from the get-go. Hillary on the left, Donald on the right. Rock, meet hard place. Hand to God, if you asked me who I’d have voted for, I would have had no answer for you.
Why couldn’t America get with Hillary? At different points in her life, she has been the First Lady, a New York senator and the US Secretary of State. This is not her first rodeo. It’s clear she’s wanted this for a long time and that may have led to her downfall. Perception is everything and being seen as grasping and power-hungry does not go well with stories of questionable donations and e-mail leaks. Each time I see her on TV with Bill Clinton at some rally or other, the theme to House of Cards keeps playing in my head. At the end of the day, being seen as untrustworthy is a death knell for a political candidate.
My mother, in so many words, says to let go and let God. She believes that everything happens for a reason, and that God has a plan for everything. My mother is clearly middle America.
It’s a simplistic, even myopic, way to look at things but I can see how it’s essential to maintain one’s sanity. At the end of the day, the world hasn’t stopped turning, and things will be what they will be. At the very least Trump’s victory could force America to reassess who and what they have become as a country and what they want to do about it. For all we know Trump could actually be good for the country. I’m choking on these words, but I’m perfectly happy to be proven wrong if the time comes and he actually steps up to the plate. With the USA sharing a border with us, it’s easy to see why it’s not just them who’re in turmoil. Canada is a little apprehensive about this too. They are our largest trading partner, and it’s essential that we maintain an amicable partnership. It’s like having a neighbour – you don’t have to be super chums, but it never hurts to remain on good terms with them, no matter how many Alanis Morrissette CDs they burn.