Trump keeps me up at night. At this point, even if he loses the election, the vitriol he’s stirred up will only increase. He and his supporters, those working to “Make America Great Again”, have taken anything resembling political discourse and turned it into the basest, most frightening ideologies. Mexicans are rapists. Muslims are terrorists. Black people are criminals. Women “will let you do anything [if you’re a star].” It’s gross, and it’s inescapable. I’m a grown up, and I don’t even live in the United States, and it causes me significant anxiety. I can’t even imagine what this is doing to American kids.
Kids, I’m sorry. As adults, we have failed you. Most of us, American or not, Right and Left, have passed on the articles, retweeted the tweets, made the jokes. We’ve consumed every morsel of this nonsense, we can’t get enough. We’re throwing words like “pussy” around now. This sucks. I can’t imagine it. As kids, you’re supposed to have a vague, fuzzy knowledge of politics. In Canada, that’s something I still enjoy as an adult. Instead, I doubt many of you are shielded from the ugliness, because Trump is ubiquitous.
What I hope is that you are smarter than we are. That you know if your hearts that bullies don’t prosper. That building a wall is silly because it’s not neighbourly. That bad manners are to be punished. That we keep our hands to ourselves.
When I was in the 4th grade in 1992, we had Current Events. For whatever reason, I remember a girl cutting out the front page image of our local newspaper, which had a group of smiling people on the cover with the headline, “Clinton Wins.” Our teacher asked the girl, “What does that mean?” The girl responded, “I don’t know… America?”
I hope the exact same thing happens in four weeks, kids. You deserve at least that.