Protest and Violence are not the Same
What Is Happening in The United States?
OK, America - pull yourselves together.
Donald Trump will be your new president, effective January 20, 2017, whether you like it or not - and let me tell you, a good chunk of the rest of the world is less than thrilled.
But the bottom line is, he is your leader for the next four years, at least, and no amount of violent protesting is going to make things better.
Am I against protesting? Far from it; I am against violence of any sort, really, although should something happen to my kids at someone else's hands, all bets are off. What I am against is people acting in a violent fashion and claiming that it's in the name of making the world a better place.
Sometimes, a revolution is necessary to ensure change; the Russian Revolution of 1917 is one example of such a revolution. Sometimes, violence is necessary to bring that about. What is happening in the United States right now reminds me pretty much of a bunch of little kids crying because they did not get their way.
I don't like Donald Trump and never have. His conduct during this presidential campaign has been nothing short of deplorable. He seemed to intimidate, bully, and strongarm everyone during the campaign to get the results he wanted, and in the end, there are countless communities that are fearing for the freedoms that they currently enjoy.
I have a friend who is Muslim and is frightened for family members living in America, thanks to Trump's reported desire to have Muslims carry identification papers.
Every person I know in the LGBTQ community is waiting anxiously to hear if their friends in the States are suddenly going to have their marriages not recognized, or see children that they have raised jointly not be allowed to be adopted. They're waiting to see if they will end up being victims of discrimination, as Trump referenced throughout his campaign.
Trump, for me, stands for everything I don't want my children to learn about but know that they will be exposed to. My kids have friends of almost every skin color, they know and are friends with people who are gay, lesbian and bi, among others, and they are among the most tolerant individuals I know. My kids were appalled that Trump was elected, to the point that my 12 year old, who reads the news semi-regularly, was almost in tears at the news of his surprising win.
But if we were American, they would not be participating in the violence. Part of that is simply because they are still quite young. Part of that is because they know that violence solves nothing.
Regardless of the motivation behind the violence, protesters need to realize that what they are in effect doing is trashing their neighborhoods, in much the same way as a toddler might throw toys in his or her room during a tantrum.
Destroying your own lives is not the way to show you are against a decision made by the electoral college, or against anything, for that matter.
Lobbying for change is.
Trump Protesters at "Work"
Pen, Pictures, Art: All are Mightier Than the Sword
All you get when you try to win through violent means is aches and pains, bruises, and sometimes death.
If Americans want change, they need to find effective ways of lobbying for change. Voters didn't vote directly for their candidate. If they did, there would be no need for the electoral college, which from what I gather is a problematic institution.
Those who actually came out to hit the polls did not come out in hoped for numbers. According to the United States Election Project, 46.6 percent of eligible voters just didn't vote. That's a lot of people - over 97 million, in fact - that did not come out to the polls, and those people could have made a lot of difference.
If so many people are unhappy with how the election went this go around, why is there not a more solid lobby for change? Why are there so many who think their voices don't make a difference?
I realize it's a lot easier to punch someone in the nose than to actually reach your hand out in peace, but when you're trying to lobby for change, why would you try to do otherwise? We all understand that people are less likely to listen to you when they are angry, and if you try and protest with violence...well...anger is your likely response.
So, if you're not happy, work to change it - don't pound on someone because they voted for a different candidate. Write letters, make art - make your voice heard so people will listen!