Election Reaction: Don’t Normalize Bigotry

It’s okay to not like those who support Donald Trump.

It sounds rude, at first, perhaps — but this election is more than simply an election. It is a multifaceted, complicated scenario, and Trump’s rhetoric is violently dangerous, literally harmful to a large majority of individuals. Women, people of color, Muslims, immigrants — millions are directly affected by such rhetoric. By supporting Trump, one assumes complicity with his hateful messages, promoting a racist, misogynistic ideology which has no place in the United States. Although many who support Trump may not agree with certain aspects of his platform, supporting him still supports those positions.

Respect is crucial to the functioning of society, but respecting your Facebook friends who post about their support of Trump lets bigotry continue. It’s true that free speech is an important tenet of democracy, but this goes beyond free speech. By allowing your friends to promote such racist rhetoric — standing silent while this discrimination occurs — you normalize racial violence as part of the political scene. Free speech must be respected, but hate speech cannot be tolerated.


Protestor / Photographer: Jim Vondruska

Trump’s election has helped to legitimize his views, and the views of millions of prejudiced Americans spanning the country. We cannot let this continue any longer. Let your voice be heard — let people know that you will not be complicit in legitimizing such bigoted rhetoric. We cannot tolerate any form of bigotry. We cannot stand by silently. Verbally reject racism and misogyny. Do not let discrimination become normal.

“It’s time for unity, respect other people’s views?” I don’t know about that. What’s the thought process there? If we’re especially nice to Nazis and KKK members, what, they’ll forget to kill people? They’ll cut it out? If we get angry, protest, and unfriend racist aunts on Facebook, they’ll kill even more? Don’t be nice to racists. Protesting is essential.

Rejecting hate is of utmost importance in the coming years, but stay safe. If harassed, you are not obligated to put yourself in harm’s way. Do what you can, protest, let your family and friends know that discriminatory policies are unacceptable. However, if danger is imminent, be sure to remove yourself from the situation. Your emotional and physical wellbeing is important. Take time for yourself.