By Contributing Writer Andrew Henry
The results are in! Donald Trump is the presidential-elect and he seems close to be finalizing his cabinet selections as well as appointments to other key positions. It is clear that millions are happy. It is also obvious that millions are disgruntled. Hillary Clinton lead Trump, 62,523,126 versus 61,201,031 in the popular vote though trailing him in the Electoral College count, 232 compared to his 306. Is it safe to say that more than 62 million voters are seething in their homes?
I won’t answer that question for the obvious reason but since Trump’s victory, there have been numerous protests in the country, some have been held directly in front of his hotels, such as Trump Tower on New York’s Fifth Avenue between 56th and 57th streets.
I’ve interviewed six students to get their opinions about Donald Trump winning and the Electoral College system, the state of America and their views on the way that the mainstream corporate news media have covered this election.
Julia Suarez,19, a Hunter student wearing grey sweater, denim pants, red and white Adidas (superstar sneakers) from Woodhaven Queens, said, “I was all for feeling the Bern but that didn’t work out so #IAmWithHer. I was honestly shocked that Donald Trump won. I don’t think it has fully hit me yet that he’s our president. I was praying and holding my breath the whole time because the election was so close. I’m honestly very worried for this country. I knew that there has always been racism and prejudice in our country, but Trump’s presidential campaign made me realize how big of a problem this is with the amount of people supporting him.
“Someone screamed, ‘Kill Obama’ during his speech after he won and that is so worrisome. Even in my neighborhood of Queens, which is considered to be one of the most if not the most diverse borough, it was reported that students from a high school in Fresh Meadows said to a black woman, ‘Aren’t you supposed to be sitting in the back of the bus now? Like Trump is president!’ People are acting like it’s the 1950’s and it’s okay to say these things.
“He also has a vice president who believes in gay conversion therapy. That is such an insult to this country considering the fact that gay marriage was just legalized last year and now we have a vice president that believes you can “cure” being gay with electroshock therapy. And the fact that the KKK has been so public with celebrating Trump’s win is very obvious that there is a huge racial problem in this country.
“Even though some Trump supporters claim not to be racist, misogynistic, or xenophobic, they have to realize that their vote enabled someone who is racist, misogynistic, and xenophobic to become the President of the United States. They have to own up to that. They don’t get to escape it just because their feelings are hurt because people are calling them names. Also Mike Pence is currently going to court to block his emails from being released but, I guess that doesn’t matter because he’s a man.“
Avid Maldonado, 23, an Hunter student wearing a black shirt, blue jeans, and black shoes from Bronx, said, “I am surprised that Trump won. Personally, I do not understand how the people of America voted a man who is a racist, bigot, and sexist into office. It makes me sad that so many people voted for Trump. I do not like him for those reasons. Maybe he will surprise all of us and do some good. Maybe not.
‘Only time will tell. It is a scary thought knowing that the majority in the House of Reps and Senate are republican. I have this negative view on Republicans as if they are not for people like me. I feel as if they benefit the rich just as Trump may do.“
LESIA FORDE, 20, an Hunter student said “I’m concerned about how race relations will change within our country. We have a president-elect who solely ran a campaign playing off the fears of white people towards POC (People of Color). Even though many can argue that Trump himself isn’t racist, his rise to power has endorsed his supports to act violently towards POC simply because of his rhetoric and what he claims he stand behind.” (Interview conducted via e-mail)
Dejanira Budansignh, 21, a Hunter student who resides in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn said “I think the state of the electoral college system needs to be revised. I do not understand how people say that citizen’s votes count when Hillary won the popular vote but Donald Trump is the winner. I feel like as citizens we should find out if there’s anything that we can do to change the state of this system and really find a way to make our votes genuinely count.”
Niamh McDonnell, a Hunter student. The mainstream media was one of the driving forces that led to a Donald Trump presidency. He said they gave him over $2 billion worth of free media. And on top of that, they worked closely with the Clinton campaign to make sure they were constantly putting down Bernie’s movement.
They initially wouldn’t cover him and then took to criticizing or belittling his arguments all of the time. He also said Donna Brazile, (who became head of the DNC after Debbie Wasserman Schultz) was actually a CNN contributor when she gave Hillary questions before a town hall debate. They wanted to maintain the status quo because they work for the advertisers that fund them, and they let Trump get so big by covering his outrageousness that they actually helped people to like him.
Some people bought into their corporatism stance on Bernie and went for Hillary,“ McDonnell said, “and some people saw they were in cahoots with Hillary and went for Trump. And they’re so obsessed with scandal that they actually spent more time speculating Hillary’s emails than they did actually talking about her policy. (Information obtained via e-mail)
This writer knows that as citizens we should respect and honor our country but sometimes it feels like our country does not respect, honor, or listen to many of citizens and residents. It is important to hear each other out and try to respect each others’ views. Let us work together in becoming more knowledgeable about our rights and knowing what we can do to ensure a better future for not just ourselves but for generations to come.
Andrew Henry can be reached at Andrew.Henry86@myhunter.cuny.edu