The Republican ran a campaign full of controversial statements and stances about women, people of color, Muslims, Latinx people, disabled people and other marginalized groups. Many people in and out of those groups were adamantly against Trump becoming president, but despite the popular vote going to Democrat Hillary Clinton, Trump reached 270 electoral votes and is now headed to the White House.
The win has created an uproar of anger, fear and protests both on and off the web. Millennials in particular have taken to social media to express their concerns and harsh feelings about what may happen to them and the country because of the new administration.
Social media is buzzing with movements to get Trump out of office before he’s even in and accounts of people who say they are facing hate crimes and other repercussions from Trump’s bigotry-infused campaign from the public. In turn many are lashing out against the anti-Trump posts, saying they are disrespectful and melodramatic.
This consistent controversy is turning violent both online and in real life, proving that the intersections of society are not cohesive and our privilege and oppression still divides us. The people calling the protests and backlash against Trump are coming from a place of misunderstanding and privilege. It might seem dramatic to be afraid of an election result when the results are unlikely to affect your safety and the cultural climate surrounding your family, friends and background. Some in the anti-Trump movement are succumbing to anger with the privilege-misunderstanding, and acting out in violent ways, and not identifying issues with socio-economic class, or education status that may’ve contributed to such a lapse in judgement. Neither is right.
I understand feeling helpless at the reaction. There are people in my life that I’m looking at differently knowing they voted for Trump and supported sexual assault, bigotry, racism, sexism and fear-mongering against ethnicities. It isn’t okay, but if nothing else it makes us realize that we are more divided than we thought and those horrific things are still not priorities for much of privileged, white, patriarchal America. We can and should speak our minds, it is our right. However, social media fighting and conflict can breed even more negativity and more inhumane, inconsiderate attitudes toward differences.
A social media firestorm like this proves we need movements like feminism that represent intersectional society and its issues with classism, privilege, oppression and prejudice because society does not yet have a full understanding or concern. If it did, I doubt Trump would’ve been our President-elect.