Gender and Sexuality Column

Clinton’s defeat is a loss for all Americans

/ The Daily Orange

Tuesday’s election was a roller coaster of emotions I’m not sure anyone could have predicted. The United States watched as Republican candidate Donald Trump gained momentum state after state and Hillary Clinton trailed behind. Finally, as the last polls closed and a hypothetical joke became a reality, a solemness and sense of fear suddenly set in.

It’s been reiterated by Trump supporters time and time again during this election cycle that we should all respect each other’s opinions. And while that is valid, it’s also important to remember that you are who you vote for. Voting is a privilege and using it to elect an individual whose beliefs infringe on others’ emotional well-being, physical safety and human rights deserves the disgusted reaction it has received from the rest of the country.

When people utter the phrase “Make America Great Again,” it is unclear which “America” they are referring to. As I watched the votes roll in Tuesday night alongside other Syracuse University students struggling to wrap their minds around this outcome, it became clear the “America” Trump preaches is not one that promotes the empowerment, freedom and rights for all Americans. Rather, it enables the promotion of rape culture, sexism, targeting of certain religious groups, discrimination against people of color and a country that lacks any sense of humanity.

With her concession speech Wednesday morning, Hillary Clinton demonstrated the very qualities that characterize a noble president.

 

With grace and an unwavering hope for the nation’s future, she imparted her gratitude to those who had rooted for her. She also acknowledged the possibility of progress for women in the political arena: “To all the little girls watching, never doubt that you are valuable and powerful and deserving of every chance and opportunity in the world.”

Clinton encouraged her supporters to keep an open mind and allow Trump the opportunity to lead and prove himself. Still, many Americans have taken to social media and protest to express their anger. And while many are saying that the future president should be respected, this backlash is not unwarranted.

Having a president-elect who has openly spewed racist remarks, been accused of sexual assault in multiple cases and made dehumanizing comments about several marginalized groups is not only a reflection of the kind of “America” he hopes to revive, but the kind of unaccepting individuals that live among us.

Clinton’s loss was a loss for everyone who poured their hearts and faith into this election only to find that this country and the freedoms it promises do not actually belong to every American.

Ivana Pino is a sophomore political science major. Her column appears weekly. She can be reached at ivpino@syr.edu.

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