I see the outcome of the presidential election as a good thing and this is why:
For a long time, many people…including the ‘silent majority’…have been quietly despairing. The government was seemingly ignorant of their struggles or unwilling to address their needs, which is what a government is intended to do. Large chunks of the citizenry were not part of the policy equation. These people had given up hope of ever mattering again.
Donald Trump’s message of “Make America Great Again” included their struggles and needs. Rather than ignore the elections, as they often have in the past, they mustered their hope and went to the polls exuberantly.
The hearts and spirits of these people are vulnerable and lie exposed in Donald Trump’s hands.
I believe that whether or not these people’s lives are improved by changes in government or policy lies in who Trump surrounds himself with and listens to…his advisors. Trump is not known to listen to advisors and Trump is used to people being Trump fodder.
Regardless, these people’s hopes have been enlivened; their heads are raised and they are looking for help. If it does not come from changes in government or policy, they will look elsewhere.
After Hurricane Hugo, I was pregnant and not able to clear brush and debris so I offered to help address the emotional needs of the children whose lives were devastated. I consulted a psychologist who specialized in trauma and disaster recovery. His answer was simple: to the extend that the family ties were healthy and functional, the families will survive. The families in despair, however, will turn to things that promise some form of control like drugs, witchcraft, guns, hate-based organizations, even evangelistic preachers.
The disheartened people of this country have their hopes up now. If they are disappointed or mistreated by hurricane Trump, it is likely they will turn elsewhere for a solution.
I am not close-minded and welcome wise action from a new administration. However, my hope does not lie in the presidency nor in the Congress, Supreme Court, or bureaucracy. My hope does not even lie in a church. My hope lies in my own connection with God.
My hope is that if the hopes of these people do not find purchase in the new administration, that they turn their eyes to the only true hope…the only trustworthy source of help and relief.