Nov 09, 2016 4:32am
Trump Supporters: Please Prove Them Wrong

As a traveler, I am well aware that the news is reported differently in different regions and on different stations in the same place. When all you hear is one side of the story, it is easy to get convinced that your version of the truth is the right one, that all other versions are wrong.

Having been in many areas of the US, I realized that Trump had a good chance of winning. Friends in solidly Blue states often argued with me. We are better than that, they said.

Better than what?

Our news sources told us to be very afraid of Trump supporters: we were told that you were racists. We fear for our friends and family members who are minorities. I fear for my Hispanic and Black mixed children, grandchildren, and others family members. I cannot fathom that anyone would look at my grandchildren and believe they are less than wonderful, that the color of their skin or their heritage would somehow diminish their greatness.

We were told that you do not respect women, that you consider us to be second-class citizens, incapable of making wise decisions. As a woman, in my life, I have often been confronted with this attitude from both men and women. It seems to get more pronounced as I get older. I was once told that my book [an American Bar Association best seller] must not be worth much because as a mother, the best advice I could give was ‘eat your vegetables.’

We were told that Trump supporters would not respect the freedom of all people to celebrate their religion and their connection with God in the way they see fit. In particular, I am afraid for my Muslim friends, good people who have taught me a lot about myself and my belief systems, how privileged I have been to be able to invisibly navigate through society without having to defend my beliefs from attack, even though mine don’t agree with those of the majority.

Our sources tell us that our gay family and friends will have to return to their closets, deny themselves and those they love, to stay safe. Some people feel uncomfortable with the idea of homosexuality and wave a banner that says it is a religious issue, imposing their beliefs against the rest of us, somehow ignoring the words of their own New Testament about loving everyone and not judging.

In my world travels, I’ve seen the results of a disregard for our connection with Nature. Fracking causes earthquakes in Oklahoma. Our water is in danger. Scientists agree. I fear for our species and our planet as we ignore and deny climate change.

Our news media warned us that our way of life, our love of our friends and family who are different from us, our celebration of the freedom to be ourselves and to live in a country of diversity and tolerance, are under attack.

It breaks my heart to believe that my friends and family share these beliefs. It stuns me to believe my country is not what I believed: a place where we can all live together in freedom, hope, and love, where everyone is welcome at my table, where we are judged by our character and our willingness to help others, to reach out when someone is down, to raise us all up.

You say that the news media is not to be trusted. I hope you are right. I do hope we are better than that.