Trump’s triumph must stir student action
It’s been a trying few days. California voters saw the outcomes of key ballot provisions such as the legalization of recreational marijuana, easier parole options for criminals of non-violent crimes and increased legislative transparency. However, Donald Trump’s presidential upset greatly overshadowed these overdue victories.
The question on countless minds is: what now? While half of the country is celebrating what others view as the greatest political upset in modern American history, and other masses of people are protesting in the streets and burning effigies, many are still completely unsure of how to react. Predictions by major news outlets and pollsters proved largely untrue, underestimating the amount of white voters that came out to support Trump.
What do we want to see from President-elect Trump? For a lot of minority groups, it’s difficult to say when we disagree with so many of his platforms and ideologies. In this position, one can only hope that Trump does exactly what numerous politicians have done before him: break his promises.
Otherwise, based on his official (and unofficial) platforms, we as a nation are looking at a wall between the U.S. and Mexico, blissfully paid for by the Mexican government. Trump’s extreme immigration policies have no sympathy for undocumented immigrants, so expect an increased presence of Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers. Trump has also expressed a desire to repeal the Affordable Care Act, which could leave millions of Americans without health insurance and might change the way certain medications, such as contraceptives and many prescription drugs, are priced.
There is also the pressing matter of the vacant Supreme Court seat. With both the House and Senate blocking President Obama’s Supreme Court nominations, which would have given the Supreme Court a liberal majority for the first time in 50 years, Trump’s nomination will most assuredly go through. When we look at the important landmark decisions that have already been made by the Supreme Court, we fear for the chance of future regression on women’s rights, LGBTQIA+ rights and the rights of marginalized communities.
To top it all off, the global market experienced volatility following Trump’s victory, with the Dow-Jones Industrial Average up 200 points as of Nov. 9, the value of the Mexican peso plunging, and European markets also experiencing shocks. Although financial markets are known to react quickly to changes and then return to moderately normal levels (see: Brexit), many are skeptical of whether Trump’s economic plan is actually sustainable in the long run.
So again, what now?
For now, this Editorial Board suggests that we as a community at UC Davis staunchly support those who have been callously marginalized by Trump and his supporters. For one, this means putting in time at the Women’s Resource and Research Center, the LGBTQIA Resource Center, the African Diaspora Center, the AB540 and Undocumented Student Center — any place that might need help in the wake of Trump’s racist and bigoted ideology. It could also mean donating to local organizations that aid marginalized communities. Or reach out to local leaders, state government and our new U.S. senator, Kamala Harris, and share your concerns.
Members of the Chicanx/Latinx community, the African American community, the Muslim community, the LGBTQIA community and undocumented immigrants, among so many other people from a variety of backgrounds, have been heinously targeted and victimized in the past. For those who can speak out, do so for those who do not have the privilege. We must stand and fight for them, not just because we are members of the same community of UC Davis students, but because we as individuals recognize the fear, anxiety and very real threat that faces other human beings.