Dear Democrats Revisited, The Story and The Aftermath
An afterword on “Dear Democrats, Read This If You Do Not Understand Why Trump Won”
It’s been 2-months since the historic 2016 election, and I felt the need to revisit that night and tell the story behind my now infamous letter to Democrats, and the aftermath that took place.
I never could have imagined that my letter would be viewed over 8.9 million times, become one of the top stories on Medium, and go viral on Facebook, Reddit, Voat, and Twitter. I’ve even been interviewed on several radio podcasts which you can check out here and here.
Personally, I’ve decided to continue writing as much as I can into the future, and hope to hit publish more often. It is also my intention to create value for others in whatever ways I can.
Since the election a lot has happened. Despite Hillary Clinton losing the election the media continues to relentlessly spread propaganda, categorize anything they don’t like as fake news, and bury anything related to Wikileaks. Meanwhile, attempts are being made to censor the Internet, Obama is passing counter propaganda legislation, and this Russian hacking narrative has now resulted in sanctions against Russia despite weak circumstantial evidence.
The continued destruction of the open Internet, and freedom of speech is heart breaking to witness. I feel utterly powerless to stop it. We clearly are experiencing a historical tipping point that is a culmination of at least three generations of history compounded into what I fear may be the beginning stages of significant global conflict.
Election Night: November 8th, 2016
The night of the election I watched as state-by-state went red, and the mainstream media was in a disillusioned state of uncertainty. I had predicted a Trump win long before election night, but part of me still wondered if Hillary Clinton and her funders could outspend Trump to win the election.
I had a Twitter feed and electoral college calculator open on my external computer display, an indie live stream of election coverage on my laptop, and the television on with the mainstream media in the background. My living room felt like a war room, with every device feeding me information.
Around 8pm Pacific Time I kept running the numbers on different election outcomes after Florida went to Trump, and tracking any changes in election results tracking the total % of votes counted in each state. By 8:47pm I had determined there was almost no probability of Hillary Clinton winning the election.
Trump had won.
Yet unlike any other election I’ve witnessed in my 30-years on this planet, the media refused to accept the outcome and kept pretending Hillary Clinton still had a chance.
This is when I started writing. All the things I wish I had said to my father, my friends, my neighbors, and my country poured out of me in a stream of consciousness. I lost track of time as a year's worth of frustration flooded the computer screen as the sound of the television behind me lied and pleaded for an alternate reality. It felt like an eternity had passed by the time I got off the computer, and I swore to myself to never hit publish.
It was well past 11pm, and the media still refused to call the election.
The night dragged on.
I had already declared Trump had won on social media, and my liberal friends were already sending me hateful messages and comments (most of them knew I voted 3rd party). I refused to go to sleep without seeing Hillary Clinton concede from the most bizarre campaign I’ve ever witnessed in my lifetime. I was not going to miss this moment in history for anything.
Around midnight, the media finally gave up and started calling the election for Trump. Yet somehow Hillary Clinton robbed us all of any remaining dignity and sanity as John Podesta, the master of propaganda, took the podium and refused to concede upon Hillary’s behalf.
Hillary Clinton’s denial to concede, and not even show her face was the final straw. I got back on the computer, and resumed writing as if I was on a mission to undo all the pain and suffering both campaigns had caused the American people. I paused briefly to watch Trump’s victory speech, and went right back to editing until I was exhausted and could barely keep my eyes open. Just after 3am I hit publish, submitted my article to Reddit and a few other sites and went to bed.
I didn’t sleep much that night, and by the morning my letter had been viewed over a million times and growing. I finally watched Hillary concede, and put what I thought was the end of the nightmare that was the 2016 election behind me. Boy, was I wrong!
By the afternoon my letter took on a life of its own, there were already more responses then I could respond to, and by the end of the day my stats had passed over 3 million views. My phone was utterly disabled with notifications of new followers, friend requests, comments, emails, tweets and retweets and would remain that way for the next several weeks as my viewership grew into the multi-millions as I became the top story on Medium for several days.
Since the election I’ve endured friends posting deranged comments on Facebook with no basis in reality. People who had formerly accused me of posting conspiracy theories because I was linking to Wikileaks were suddenly posting a wide range of unfounded conspiracy theories, and accusations with no evidence. I tried my best to reason with some of them, especially the people I knew in person, but most of them were simply not ready to listen.
The thing that hurt the most was when one of my friends, whose wedding I attended, started harassing my other friends, family, and followers on Facebook the day the electoral college voted. The next day they proceeded to try and discredit me, and even attempted to shame me publicly to my friends and family when I wouldn’t support their radical views. When I contacted them in private they sadly made it a point to compare how many social media followers we both had, as if I cared or it mattered. They eventually defriended me, and have not spoken to me since.
Apparently, there was a large number of Democrats who refused to accept the outcome of the election who hoped the electoral college would somehow not vote Trump into the White House. This of course backfired historically, and Clinton lost more electoral votes than anyone in recent history. On one hand I sympathized with them, but on the other I detested their unwillingness to accept reality.
I still believe the people of America need to come together right now, but I know living in denial is not a path forward.
Understandably, many of my friends and family were upset, confused, and utterly hopeless after the election. I did my best to counsel them, as well as respond to my readers. I must have directly interacted with a thousand people or more in the first week alone after the election in various capacities as if I was somehow personally responsible for the election results.
The outreach was incredible. Millions of people read what I had to say, and shared and recommended it to others. However, after a few days I had to make a mental health decision to stop replying to all the responses on the article itself. I apologize if you wrote me and I did not reply. I am only a single person, and I could not respond to everyone.
The hate I received from a vocal minority of people I didn’t know was understandable. I’ve now somehow been accused of being both a liberal, a conservative, and I’ve even been accused of being a Russian agent of the Kremlin in some odd form of modern day McCarthyism. Many people were blaming the messenger, and ignored the intention of my letter entirely.
They were not interested in the truth, or ready to have their echo chamber shattered. For all the haters, there were millions of others who finally had a chance to be exposed to a different view of the world other than what the media had been selling them.
What I did not anticipate however was being attacked by a semi-celebrity, and people who I thought were my friends turn their backs on me because I didn’t support their political views.
I would like to remind everyone in this country that we are all Americans regardless of politics, ethnicity, sex, and religion. The path to freedom is rooted in our ability to come together and fight injustice and corruption, despite our differences. We need to cast aside the past, identity politics, echo chambers, and instead focus on how we can all help each other.
This is not the time for divisive rhetoric, and it is healthy and natural to question both government and corporate sponsored agendas and propaganda no matter what political party is in power. Patriotism comes in many shapes and forms, and we cannot allow rhetoric and propaganda divide us.
Be well America. 2017 is going to be interesting.
P.S. Thank you to the thousands of people who now follow me on social media. I am truly humbled and touched to be able to express myself to so many people.