Man up, people! Trump election protests are misdirected

It’s understandable. People want to vent.

To say that not everybody is happy or even okay with the presidential election Tuesday would be so much more than the understatement of the year. Everybody is so not okay.

Thousands of people from Portland to New York City marched to donaldprotest3protest the election results, chanting “Fuck Donald Trump” and “Love trumps hate” in the same ironic breath. Even in London, there was a protest at the U.S. embassy. There was a candlelight vigil at the White House Wednesday. The hashtag #notmypresident is trending. People are unfriending longtime pals on Facebook, shutting down highways and burning flags and trash in the streets of Oakland and Chicago.

Burning flags and trash in the streets! Like if this was Venezuela or something!

It wasn’t so long ago that President-elect Donald Trump was criticized, by some of these very same people, for intimating that he might not accept the election results. And now Hillary Clinton supporters are the ones calling for hillarytrump… what is that they want, exactly? For the election not to count?

Do we still live in a democracy? I may not agree with the presidential choice of “the people have spoken,” but I will die to defend him. Seriously, people. Don’t make me die for this idiot clown.

It is not easy to sit here and defend The Donald. Ladra does not like him. I did not vote for him. Of course, I didn’t vote for her either. Until the two major parties in this country provide me with better options, I’ll vote Libertarian or not at all. But I knew full well it was a protest vote and that Gary Johnson was not going to win. And I was ready to accept whoever did.

And I’m not about to unfriend my mom because she voted for Trump or unleash a obscenity-laced verbal attack on my sister via twitter because she voted for Hillary.

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Because we still live in a democracy, right? We are supposed to defend their right to vote for whoever they damn well please. Write in Fidel Castro if you want to. Write in David Dukes. You’d be stupid, but whatever. It’s your vote. It’s your right. And that is one of the main reasons my parents came to this country — so they and we could openly support whoever we want, so that we could celebrate elections without the riots and street fires and state brutality that permeates the process in so many other countries.

We also have a right to protest peacefully, as some Hillary supporters are planning donaldprotestto do at 6 p.m. tomorrow at Bayfront Park. But I have to wonder what that accomplishes? What exactly are the demonstrators’ demands?

The word impeach has been used, although I am not sure you can impeach someone who isn’t even president yet and I don’t know what “high crimes” would be cited. At the very least, the call for impeachment is premature. Protesters should wait until after Trump is tried for conning those poor university students. They don’t have to wait long. The trial is scheduled for later this month.

Some have suggested we throw out the electoral votes and go by the popular vote, which Hillary won by 233,400 votes — which, frankly, is really not something to be so proud of. Shouldn’t it have been considerably more? And that’s not the way it works, by the way. We have a democratic process that calls for electoral votes. Otherwise the people in California, New York, Texas and Florida would always pick the POTUS. Why would people vote in any other state?

“We saw a campaign that was filled with racism and misogyny and whole host of other terrible tactics that ultimately were successful for winning the electoral college.” said Ethan Miller of Jobs with Justice, an organization that defends workers rights to unionize and one of the groups that organized the D.C. vigil.

“But we’re not going to let a Donald Trump presidency stop the progress in this country.”

What exactly are we afraid that he might do?

Palmetto High students in Pinecrest walked out of class Thursday just after noon — in the middle of fifth period — to donaldprotest2chant “No Trump, no KKK, no fascist USA.” And while I have to applaud these teenagers’ engagement, do they know what they are chanting? Or is this just an excuse to get out of algebra? As far as I can remember, Trump denounced the KKK leader’s endorsement. Did Hillary denounce Fidel Castro’s blessing?

It doesn’t help that many of the protesters seem to have agendas of their own. Whether its Black Lives Matter or Occupy Democrats, equal marriage activists or just plain and proud communists, it’s hard to believe many are really protesting the election results as much as they are protesting the impact on their particular issue.

Man up, people! Get over it! That’s the price of living in a free democracy. 

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Now, don’t get me wrong. I do believe that Trump has acted like a racist, misogynist, homophopic, xenophobic pig, a pervert and a conman and a tyrant-in-the-making with zero public service experience or even respect for public service, little knowledge of world affairs and a fifth grader’s vocabulary. I do believe there should be some concern that someone with Trump’s temperament and judgement just became the leader of the free world, which comes with a red nuclear “go” button and control of the Supreme Court bench.

I also believe the racists who supported Donald Trump — and while my mom has her own reasons and is not racist trumpprotestthere are definitely racists among his core base — have been emboldened and could feel empowered. Gays, Muslims, blacks, Mexicans or people who just look gay, Muslim, black or Mexican have legitimate reason to fear not Trump, himself, but what he may have unleashed. Just as we’ve seen protests of the election results, we’ve seen people in pick-up trucks shouting and waving confederate flags at impromptu honk-and-wave Trump rallies, yelling at people who don’t look exactly like them to go home — not knowing that home is Hillsborough County, USA.

Illegal immigrants have legitimate reason to worry that enforcement and deportation may be stepped up in a Trump administration. But, unfortunately, their lot always changes with the political winds. What they need is to get out of that storm permanently. What the people protesting Trump for Dreamers and immigrants need to be protesting is the fact that this country needs bipartisan immigration reform that is humane while it also makes us more secure. Now. Regardless of who is president. Trump is a symptom. The disease is our broken immigration system.

In fact, all these protests against the election results are misdirected. These energies should be invested, instead, toward the issues and values we hold dear, not the person chosen as our national leader by voters in a fair election.

Let’s organize to protect our rights and ourselves from the new hope found by those who hate.

Let’s work harder to elect people who do espouse our people-unitevalues and who treat women and minorities right and who don’t mock the physically challenged among us. Or, better yet, let’s run for office. 

Let’s demonstrate to save the EPA or the Department of Education, both of which might disappear in a Trump presidency. Let’s protest any action he makes to limit our rights — if and when he makes them. Let’s demonstrate for or against the repeal of Obamacare, for or against a wall, for or against domestic partnership benefits in every state.

But to protest the election results is ridiculous. Because it is our own damn fault. The truth is neither candidate was perfect. And Democrats are as much to blame for the election results as Republicans. We share the responsibility for President Trump.

If you don’t want to hear it from Ladra, then listen to Hillary herself:  “I hope that he will be a successful president for all Americans,” she said in her concession speech Wednesday.

“I still believe in America and I always will. If you do, then we must accept this result and then look to the future.”