How did this happen?
Did Trump make America great again?
We have long since passed the point where Trump’s tendency to fascism can be ignored.
We have long since passed the point where the repeated, daily now, multiple warning signs can be dismissed as sarcasm, or jokes, or Trump just being Trump.
In the wreckage following World War II, people asked over and over, and continue to ask up to this very day: How could this have happened? How could you people, you Germans, how could you let that madman destroy your republic, destroy your nation, destroy your people, destroy your civilization? How? How is that possible? Why didn’t you DO SOMETHING?
And the answer was: We didn’t know. We thought he would make Germany great again. We thought he would make Germany for Germans, get rid of the undesirables. We thought he would rebuild our military, make it mighty again. We thought he would make the world fear us, respect us, acknowledge our superiority. He said he’d give us jobs, rebuild our infrastructure, make us all rich. We didn’t know. We didn’t know until it was too late!
Well, America, WE don’t have that excuse.
WE do know.
And you’re looking at it. You’re looking at it every single day. You’re looking at the pinched ugly faces of racists and bigots and supremacy, the KKK and the Neo-Nazis, Homophobia, Transphobia, Islamophobia, Anti-Semites, violence and fear of every kind touted as American values, jingoism, military fetishism, religious fanaticism, America only for Americans, walls, propaganda sold as truth despite its OBVIOUS AND PROVABLE falsehood, the cult of personality, the fear of the other, the suspicion that our neighbors and our government are plotting against us, the appeal to some supposed lost greatness, the nostalgia for the good old days of glory, and now the suggestion that civilians should be tried by military tribunal — free of the burden of law, the Constitution, appeal, and all the values and protections we Americans hold most dear. The very ideals those like Trump would say make us “exceptional,” that — that right there — is what we would deny others.
How could this happen?
It happens when the ideals of hope and optimism and community are replaced with fear and hate and intolerance. It happens inch by inch, day by day, as the idea of The Other takes hold. It happens when reason is replaced by the mindless shouting mob, when a nation that calls itself exceptional compromises its values for expediency, for rendition, for torture, for indefinite detention without trial or appeal because those things are EASY. They’re easy. They’re easier than holding fast to high ideals, the very ideals which made us great, which once made us admired and respected the world over. They’re easier than facing down the mob, they’re easier than honor.
That’s how it starts.
That’s how it starts when you give up honor and ideals for expediency. Because it’s easy.
And you don’t have to look very far to see how it ends.
How could this happen?
It happens because we let it happen. Because we dismiss the warning signs. Like Bhopal. Like Chernobyl. Like the Titanic. Like ten thousand other disasters which could have been prevented and were not.
Every day this guy gives warning. Every day.
Every day the alarms sound. Every day.
Every day it grows worse.
Every day you see what an America under Trump would be like.
How could it happen?
You are at a very scary tipping point. How and who you choose to be at this moment will not only define you as individuals, as a society, as a country but will also have a ripple effect on the entire world.
The rest of the world is not impressed that our economies and possibly existence on the planet depend on your choices because your greed and arrogance have stockpiled the ability to destroy both and your willful ignorance has led you to this tipping point through denial and hate.
Be very very careful that you do not become the mirror image of what you hate. Extremists are dangerous no matter what side of the line they stand on and hate will always smother reason if it is allowed to flow freely.
Water, melanin, bones, blood. In route to death, while I’m here, might as well get shit accomplished.
Photographer, fitness enthusiast, blogger, and mother of two.