Anything Can Happen

After the 2016 presidential election, it’s really easy to say that anything can happen. Based on polls before the election, Donald Trump had a very slim chance of winning, but he won by gaining enough electoral points. (At the time of this writing, Hillary Clinton won the popular vote by 2.5 million.)

On the election night, I couldn’t believe my eyes. I was so sure that people would not vote for the incompetent bully who bragged about grabbing women by their genitals without their consent because he was “a star.” I was so sure that the American people had more common sense than that. I’m not wrong that often, but I am not afraid of admitting it: I was wrong.

Even though Trump didn’t win the popular vote, enough people voted for him to win the appropriate electoral points, which still upset me. Was the United States still this white supremacist, racist, sexist, chauvinistic, islamophobic, illogical, and ignorant for him to become its top leader? It’s a question I’m still pondering about.

The United States may not be what I’ve believed it to be. To me, that was my most reality-shattering realization.

What I’ve learned is this: anything (really, anything) can happen.

If a person who has no experience in politics or any type of public service can become president, then anything can happen… and it can be a scary thought.

The Affordable Health Care Act (also known as Obamacare) can be demolished and 22 million people could lose their health care. American Muslims can be placed in internment camps just like Japanese Americans during World War II. More women may be sexually assaulted by men who think they can get away with it because of their wealth or social status.

Already, since the election, the Southern Poverty Law Center has documented 867 hate incidents 10 days from the election (and that’s just what’s been reported). Teachers are reporting that students are using Trump’s election rhetoric to bully other students, including Mexican Americans, at school. This trend is referred to as “The Trump Effect.”

Like I said, anything can happen…it can also be a powerful thought.

People can be more politically conscious, organized, and active than ever before. People can fight for social justice, equal rights, and peace on an unheard of level. Lots of things can happen.

Already, nonprofit organizations are receiving unprecedented amounts of donations since the election. Peaceful anti-Trump rallies and protests are being held around the country.

Sometimes things need to get worse in order to get better. I became more politically active during President George W. Bush’s terms, and I expect now, more than ever before in recent history, people will be more empowered to make the United States a better place for all people, despite the challenges of a Trump presidency.

Right here, right now, you can be the most politically active than you’ve ever been before.

Anything. Can. Happen.

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