Trump is planning to build the wall, can we talk about it?
I’m upset right now about what’s going on with new POTUS wanting to move forward with building the wall (Mexico has already said it ain’t paying for it) and halting immigration of people coming from Muslim countries. And I have thoughts on it, I am experiencing feelings of frustration, fear and confusion around this. And yes, I want to share my opinions. But, I think WAY more importantly, I want to have more productive dialogue, with people that agree with me and want to figure out how to make this immigration mess less messy as civilians. And not just people that agree with me, I also want to have a dialogue with people that support Trump for their own reasons. I want people that support/don’t support Trump to share with me, friends that support Trump/don’t support Trump why his anti-immigration strategy is chill/not chill. “We the people,” no matter how divided we are, need to accept that everyone is not always going to have the same view, but we still need to acknowledge each other’s conflicting opinions. We will survive and can still live harmoniously if we don’t always agree. Being the bearer of good news, I know there is always an opportunity for people with different views to share a common ground, share a new perspective and even persuade/educate each other without things getting crazy like a Real Housewives fight.
As someone that has half her family in Mexico and is daughter to immigrant parents, I’m shocked and scared that Trump is going forth with anti-immigration plans to shut people of a certain race (Mexican) and of a certain nationality and religion (Muslim countries) out. If that isn’t racism, then show me the latest definition of racism that I missed today. I’m trying to cope with Trump swaying towards racism and bigotry against immigrants and people of other cultures — many of my friends, people I respect, me and my family, and I just don’t really know how to deal right now.
Anti-immigration policies Trump is trying to create undermine the values and history that the USA was built upon — immigration! Remember the Mayflower, Quakers, yeah? Immigrants! Coming to America for a better way of life. If a pre-Trump incarnation was alive back then and wanted to keep Quakers out by building a wall, most of us wouldn’t even be in or from the U.S. right now, not Trump or Melania, not your racist uncle or your really old, stubborn and ‘misguided by the times’ grandma at Thanksgiving dinner, not the alt right Nazis, not me or most if not all of my friends.
I want to understand how those who voted for him will hold him accountable for his racist and oppressive tendencies against specific groups of people… because even if you’re not racist yourself but you actively support someone that is, someone that is actively following through with plans to oppress different groups of people, someone that hasn’t done enough to tell racist people and the alt right folks to calm the eff down, you are essentially ‘turning the other cheek,’ which is no better than how Trump is behaving. You may have set aside your own honorable values of human decency to protect your own rights and your own fiscal/political freedom, but now it’s your turn to protect other people’s rights by not condoning outdated, uninformed and racist behavior. It’s okay to stick up for people even if they are different from you, it’s okay to peacefully tell your friends that it’s not a big deal if others are different from them. Humans, no matter what label you put on them or yourself deserve to be treated like a human.
No matter what political label you want to give yourself, no matter if you are a woman or a man, no matter where you’re from, religious or not, please stay informed, please encourage open discussion between your peers. Don’t turn your cheek when discrimination and oppression of rights are happening but it doesn’t personally affect you. Just because you aren’t experiencing marginalization of being a minority, a minority in poverty, a woman, a person of a certain race, color or sexual orientation, religion, etc., doesn’t mean that it’s okay to not stick up for people.
Your privilege isn’t a free pass to put others down or ignore their suffering because you don’t understand them or relate to them. Honor your privilege of living in or being from the U.S. or another privileged country by raising others up that don’t share some of the same privileges that you have grown up with. Never stop learning about the world outside of your immediate circle of reality and use your heightened awareness to break the outdated status quo that is still oppressing people, despite some of the progress humanity has made. The labels you choose to adopt of being “white,” “Republican,” “fiscally conservative,” “male,” “born in the US,” “afraid of terrorists,” “choosing to be pro life,” etc. are your, my, your mom, whoever’s values and truths that you have the freedom to accept and have acknowledged by others. We have the responsibility to also acknowledge the heritage and values of others, even if you may not agree.
We are all cosmic brothers and sisters in the grand scheme of things. We all came from the same planet. We can all strive towards a more compassionate world together. We don’t have to bash each other’s diversity, we can grow together from it.