I have listened to Trump with his fascist, misogynistic rhetoric, and I am well aware of Clinton with her warmongering record. But before voting, I must stop to think about how each administration would affect those in my life, my kids, family and friends. I ask: what about the social movements that I am involved in, how will they be different?
Some of my friends are undocumented immigrants, and some have recently gotten their legal status to stay in the US. I have no doubt that under Trump they will be out of this country before we can organize anything. This is because of the way he carelessly has attacked people of color, immigrants, women, and more. It is telling when a person says they can kill someone on 5th Ave and it would not affect his ratings. When someone can say it was smart of him to avoid paying taxes, or calls women pigs and incites violence and then denies he had anything to do with the protestor being punched in the face.
I am the daughter of a Mexican citizen but born in the US. Will he come after me? Some people say no he won’t, that it is just talk, but is he just any candidate? I say no, he is not. Under a Clinton administration if she attempts any deportations, I feel I would have a fighting chance.
Until a recent trip to Connecticut with a connection in Minneapolis, it had not occurred to me how people’s attitudes can change toward me and others of color.
There were clearly more white people than Latinos or African Americans at these two airports. I suddenly found myself feeling uncomfortable, and much more aware of my brown skin. I asked myself: will this person now treat me differently, will they be rude or friendly? I had never felt this way while traveling. I soon realized this was a result of the current climate that Trump had been stirring up, and the subtle effect it had on me.
On the airplane I sat in the middle seat, between two white people that were both watching Fox news, with a report on a Trump campaign event. It caused me to feel apprehensive, and question do these two people agree with Trump? I wondered if they would show any aggression towards me and/or be rude. I have flown quite a bit in my years, and I had never felt this intimidated on a flight before. As one who has been in the struggle and has some understanding of social forces (and knows full well how racism works), and yet I felt this intimidation and uncertainty. I worried how others in this country must feel. Both of my fellow passengers turned out to be friendly and I had a nice conversation with one of them. That uncertainty I felt was relieved, but I was surprised by my initial reaction.
It raised a question for me: how it would change for us as women to have Trump as president? He has called women pigs and says it is dangerous for women to work. What does that mean for single mothers who work to make ends meet? A president with no regard for women is a dangerous person to have in such a high position of power. With Clinton in office, I feel I would have a fighting chance.
What about the children? Trump wants to repeal the Affordable Care Act, he wants to set the minimum wage at $12 or less, he is clearly not for helping the working poor and wants to give tax breaks for the wealthy and have the rest of us pay for services with the already-low wages we earn. Who will pay the greatest price? The children.
We can stop it if we go out to vote.
Some people say Clinton is a warmonger but they don’t say that Trump has been asking “why have we not used nuclear weapons if we have them?” Whom would l prefer in office? I would prefer Bernie Sanders, or someone from a third left Party like the Communist Party. A candidate that talks about putting people before profits and want to bring socialism to our country, that would be my preference. But it is not about what I want, it is about what is before me and which one will be the candidate under whose regime I can continue my activism.
Clinton has said she will follow the Democratic platform that is 80% of what the Bernie Sanders campaign was calling for. We as a people are responsible for making sure that she will follow it. How difficult would it be to get Trump to do anything? What does he believe? What have we learned from other fascist leaders in power? These are questions we need to answer before voting for a third Party candidate.