Wednesday, December 28, 2016

2017 AND THE AUDACITY OF HOPE

This was written in November 2016, just after the US election results were announced. 
2017 is here and hope is a good thing. So read on...
To all those who are sad, distressed and fearful about the US 2016 elections verdict, don't freak out yet—President Trump may not be such a bad idea, after all.
His presidency is not necessarily a vote in favor of racism and bigotry.
His campaign and its appeal have also lain in his talk of lowering taxes, increasing insurance premiums and on concerns on the ground about being forgotten by DC... real problems of people.
It was a vote against elitism rather than against a particular gender or a particular race.
It was an anti-establishment vote and an anti-Washington DC message.
Yes, Trump said horrible, disgusting and unforgivable things about women (and minorities, Latinos and gays). Bill Clinton did not just say, but allegedly did bad things. And allegedly, Hillary is supposed to have shut them up.
Hillary was pro-war, admitted to it and has apologized for it.
While the Democrats focused on issues like Trump's vulgarity and misogynistic statements, Trump supporters, the working and the forgotten class had other issues to be angry about. And they wanted a change.
In all this, the media, the pollsters, pundits and the Twitterati failed to recognize or highlight their concerns.
Bernie Sanders, the candidate who focused on these very issues was taken down by his own party. He could have won. Who knows? After all, Sanders won against Clinton in both the Michigan and Wisconsin primaries—the crucial states that Clinton eventually lost on 8 November.
Coming to the Hope bit now, Donald cannot afford to be at war with the world—he has businesses everywhere, including the "Muzzlum" countries, where he hobnobs with the Sheikhs.
The wall at the Mexico border is unlikely to happen. It will crumble for want of money.
And finally, Donald Trump has been a reality star, a showman. A lot of his hate rhetoric seems to be just that—rhetoric.
In his first ever victory speech at around 3.40 AM ET on 9 November, he said, "We'll seek common ground, not hostility". The most important thing for Trump would be to give a stern message to his supporters not interpret this verdict as license to hate, abuse and attack.
Hopefully, he won't play out his hate rhetoric. And hopefully, Mike Pence will be the steadying, sobering, wise voice.
Is that audacious?

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