Five reasons why I won’t leave the US just because Trump is now the President Elect
I called it after Brexit: there’s a nasty feeling in the air all over the world: fear and hatred fills us. We’re paranoid and there’s (seemingly) nothing we can do to stop it. Least of all vote for Donald Trump.
When we bought our house I joked that it was a bad financial decision because if Trump gets in we wouldn’t be staying in America.
My daughter is holding me to that. She doesn’t believe she can stay in the country given what’s just happened. What did just happen?
Well, of course, in case you’re in denial, Donald Trump is now America’s President elect. Hard to believe for many (especially here in LA) but like it or not, just under half America voted for him. (He won through the Electoral College vote—see my previous Blog for an explanation). The question in my mind—and many others’—is did they vote for him because they hate Hilary so much or whether it’s because they actually thought Donald Trump could be good for America? We’ll never really know. And frankly it doesn’t really matter.
But here’s what I know. I won’t be leaving the US because Donald Trump will be President come January 20. And here are the
Five reasons why I won’t leave the US just because Trump is the President elect.
I can’t just decide to convince my husband to quit his job and move home just because I don’t like the guy that will lead this Country for the next four (hopefully) years. I can’t just pull the kids out of school and ship them back home because I don’t think the guy voted in to be the next President is a bigot and a bully who thinks he’s better than everyone else; who demeans women and thinks of them as little more than objects of lust–as long as you’re good looking enough.
2. Being realistic
A lot like practicality I suppose. I have to be realistic and accept that life just doesn’t work that way. Does it? I have to accept that life sets you many challenges and you have to deal with them face on rather than running away or hiding from them.
I hope I’m right when I say that there will be lots of things President elect Donald Trump says he’s going to do that he’s just not going to. He said so many things that were sound grabs to shock, designed to fuel hate. He’s a cowboy, he shoots from the hip and who knows (or trusts) exactly what comes out of his mouth.
3. Give him a chance
Guess what America, you actually have no choice but to give him a chance. He’s all you’ve got. He’s all I’ve got. It was a year and a half in the making in an election campaign designed to wean out the fledging candidates and come up with the two bestest, strongest candidates for the job. If you’re not happy with that then perhaps you should speak up and change the way things are done. (God knows it cost enough money).
And in case you’re saying it simply can’t be done; change can’t happen, I’ll give you one reason why change can absolutely happen: Donald Trump.
Watch that wall become a virtual wall: one that limits entry to those who “don’t belong”. There will be no Great Wall of Trump.
What he might do though might actually make sense. He might make sure more investment is being made inside the US. He might actually make sure America keeps its industries kicking along within its borders rather than kicking everyone out and encouraging manufacturing outside. And maybe he will actually shake things up, ask lots of dumb questions designed to challenge how and why things are done certain ways in order to actually effect change.
And, I might actually get to pay less tax. Wouldn’t that be a good thing? I have no idea where my tax dollars go: the government services here are shite to say the least and virtually none of my taxes go to those in need. It doesn’t go back to support me and my family. I pay for everything I need. Everything. From school (first through my property taxes and then through my private school fees) to medical expenses to paying for my waiter’s medical insurance in the form of another tax (applicable here and on-charged in some places in LA).
But, in the same breath I hope that the economy does get a kick start, that more people can work to enjoy a better life. That all those people in those small towns who voted for him knew something we didn’t. That their vote actually didn’t go to waste and he does good. And, by the way, that they get more than the pitiful minimum wage you get here. I hope it really is as simple as he says it is.
If these working and middle class people get the jobs and can give their families a good, comfortable life then good job.
4. Suck it up: life sux sometimes
I say, and have said several times, sport is the biggest equaliser: you can’t buy your way into the team, you can’t bribe your way into a win. You can’t complain to your mother or write a note to the Coach to get your own way. It teaches the best life lessons: how to lose, how to be a gracious winner, being part of a team—you know how it goes? (I hope).
But here we have the ultimate life lesson (for half of American voters at least). A very painful life lesson for these guys.
You might throw all your money at a candidate, you might tweet and Instagram, use your clout to encourage others to believe what you believe. But, at the end of the day it just doesn’t always turn out the way you hope it will. There are others out there that you have no control over. None whatsoever.
You can’t buy your way out of the problem; you can’t bury your head in the sand; you can’t ask your mum to write a note to whoever is in charge; you gotta suck it up.
And, hopefully, as we reflect and work out how this all happened, we learn from it. I hope this encourages people to get up and make a difference.
In the meantime what a great life lesson: suck it up, life sux sometimes.
Next time your kids says she hates her teacher remind them Trump is our new President. #lifesnotfair
— It Started in LA (@gwennyjohn) November 9, 2016
5. She’ll be right mate
We have a saying in Australia—she’ll be right mate. It’s a bit apathetic, a shrug of the shoulders and a bit of wishful thinking. But it kind of sums up how I have to think. In view of points one and two I have to believe it’ll be ok.
Obama tried really hard to change so many things and he found it really, really hard. Trump might have lots of ideas and brash thoughts but he might also find it hard to enact many of them. He can’t bully everyone into doing what he wants, he’ll have to go about change through a slow, rigorous system. So while he’s banging his head against a brick wall (no, not the Great Wall of Trump) she’ll be right mate.
In other news, marijuana is now legal in California for recreational purposes. There may well be a state full of Democrats that will be high for the next four years.
Parting words of wisdom
Like I said, we’ve got no choice. We’ve got to accept it and move on. Let’s hope it either goes really well or we learn from this. Let’s hope that next time it means we actually listen to the masses who are/were trying to tell us what they think. We just didn’t listen (or believe) they’d win. What do they know? We thought we knew better. We dissed them and made fun of them.
And in the meantime we have to stop bullies. We need to learn to stand up to them and stop encouraging them and letting them get away with their bad behavior; that’s it simply not OK. For some reason society wants to be friends with or accepted by the bully. We’ve really got to stick up for each other.
To my beautiful baby girl who is broken by this news. I’m so sorry. Life isn’t always fair. You are smart and optimistic and you can make a difference. I don’t think Hilary lost because she’s a woman, I think she lost because Americans didn’t want her to be President. You can be whatever you want to be and I encourage you to go for it; this is not a setback for you. I’m sure of it.
Well that got very serious didn’t it? The afternoon is creeping up on me. Might take me a few days to follow my own advice. Keep calm and have a cocktail.
And, in the meantime, I can’t wait to see what the next series of The House of Cards brings.
God Bless ‘Murica.
xx It Started in LA xx
PS: Our visas are due for renewal next year. Let’s hope we get to do two more years–maybe we’ll be forced to leave because of the stricter immigration laws. That will be ironic to say the least.