Since Donald Trump became President, a new kind of political frenzy has taken over the country. From the recent violence in Virginia to the taking down of confederate statues around the country, hatred and intolerance has pervaded.
Why is it that a president who was democratically elected continues to face such problems? Don’t people have any respect for the election process and our constitutional republic any more? It is not like a thug with guns has just declared himself the president. He is the rightful president. And the people who voted for him, and some who continue to support him, may have their solid reasons. It is not like they are doing it out of xenophobia, racism or patriarchalism.
The reason most people voted for Trump is the failure of the current political setup to address the concerns and wishes of the masses. Donald Trump may not be perfect, but he has connected with people and people have connected with him. They are real people with real problems: from the laid-off coal miner in coal country to the millions of jobless youth throughout the country.
They rallied around his call to bring jobs back and get the economy back on track. It is not like all Trump supporters agree on all of his stances; and it is extremely unfortunate that some think otherwise. Liberals and other people who voted against Trump (or abstained), and are against his policies, sometimes blame the entire Trump electorate over the actions of a few deranged individuals, like the KKK. Let me be clear: the KKK is a disgusting organization and it hardly matters. Yet people turn up in droves to clash with them, when they should learn to simply ignore the “crazy” and move on.
An overwhelming majority of the Trump supporters and Republicans in general denounce the KKK openly. What we don’t denounce is their right to peaceful assembly and free speech. I know free speech as protected by the Constitution is hardly understood by some people on the other side; but there are no clauses within it restricting the activities of the KKK. As long as it doesn’t violate the constitution, it is within their rights in this country. Defending their right to express doesn’t mean a person (much less every Trump supporter) is a white nationalist himself! That is just absurd.
Do we not live in America anymore, which guarantees freedom of speech and the freedom to choose the leader we like? This intolerance is the reason that there are millions of voters living in blue states, like New York and California, who can’t speak about supporting Trump openly for fear of drawing aggression from the other side.
People can protest as much as they want– but curtailing people’s right to free speech and assembly is not only unconstitutional, it is immoral. People need to get out of this political frenzy, isolation and polarization– and the only way to do that is to respect people and allow them to express openly and understand each other. If we fail to do that, things in America will only get worse.