Give him a chance, don't give him a chance. Write off all of his supporters, don't write off all of his supporters. Delete the Facebook friends you disagree with, don't delete the friends you disagree with. Watch the news and willingly fall into a spiral of hopelessness and anxiety/stomach cramps/diarrhea or, or don't watch the news for a day only to realize the concept of ignorance being bliss is complete bullshit.
I'm not going to let go of that word - ignorance - because it's loaded and it's kind of how we got here. We are all, in a sense, ignorant about the things that don't affect us. It's easy to not pay attention to American politics during the three years between presidential elections. It's also easy to do the same in regards to global politics because we live in a country that we've always thought is the greatest one of them all.
In his article Trump Won Because Voters Are Ignorant, Literally, Jason Brennan confronts the idea of voter ignorance first hand - well, as directly as he can. "It's not that people are stupid," says Brennan, "rather it's that democracy creates bad incentives."
"Consider: if you go to by a car, you do your research. After all, if you make a smart choice, you reap the rewards; if you make a bad choice, you suffer the consequences. Over time, most people learn to become better consumers."
So is this it? Is a Trump presidency going to force the average American citizen to become a better voter? Of course not. My optimism is wearing thin; as is that of my friends and others who are fearful of Trump's America. I'm eager for empathy, I'm begging for empathy. I'm holding onto a string of hope that people will come to realize that even if they fall under the (small) umbrella of people who will benefit from a Trump administration, that they should still be fearful too.
I understand that we can't expect someone to feel empathy and compassion towards a person they've never met or towards someone who is part of a demographic that they have been conditioned to fear. But those who are yelling and calling for a greater America, a less divided America, need to understand that it's people that make this country great, not politicians. We're the ones who are supposed to decide what kind of standards we hold our public officials to. And now it seems that we've reached a point of post-truthness that can't be reversed only by more furious fact checking. We need fact checking but we also need something else. Because we saw that despite the fact that Donald Trump out right, flat out lied not only during every presidential debate, but also in a majority of his rally speeches, he won. The facts didn't work. They're supposed to work because we, America, are the leading example of democracy. We as citizens should know how to vote not just with the motive of bettering our own lives, but with the motive of bettering the lives of the people around us; of our family, our neighbors, our acquaintances, and our friends we might not have met yet.
At the end of the day we still live in America; a country that dominates and sets the precedent for the world order, for better or for worse. We often go without realizing that a lot of the time it's for the worse. We disguise our wrongdoings by labeling them as 'democracy.' We like to throw democracy under the bus. I'm just proposing, hoping that we find a cure to American ignorance with empathy and compassion.
Other cool articles:
Ignorance Does Not Lead to Election Bliss by Jonathan R. Cole