I can’t tell you how many folks I’ve heard say, “I’ll be so glad when this election is over and we can get back to normal.”
Well, the election is over, but will our politics ever be “normal” again?
In a stunning upset — at least to the country’s media and show biz elite — comparable to NSU beating Alabama in football, Donald Trump will be our next president.
I remember presidential elections going back to Dwight Eisenhower in the 1950s. But never in 60 plus years of watching presidential politics has your humble scribbler seen anything like the election of 2016.
For months I’d felt nothing but contempt for both candidates — one, a lying, greedy woman of questionable emotional stability who felt entitled to the nation’s highest office, and the other a loose cannon, impulsive school yard bully type who never let his brain get in the way of his mouth.
I must say I got a kick out of watching the networks Tuesday night and seeing the utter shock and despair of the media elite. With the exception of the folks at Fox, they were just stunned that their beloved Hilary had not won. The stupid boobs had actually elected Trump!
One comment by a member of that all-knowing elite said it best for them. “This is a triumph of the great unwashed,” he said, using a term from the 19th century that applied to ignorant peasants and workers. Now that is what I call arrogance, the arrogance of the elite. As for me, I shower every day. Which leads me to what I want to tell you next.
I had long planned to vote in the Louisiana Senate and House races and for local issues, but not cast a ballot for president. But, at the last minute, in the voting booth, I touched the “X” next to the name of Trump. I just couldn’t bring myself to vote for Hilary Clinton, whose policies would continue to weaken what’s left of our energy independence, would continue Obamacare in some form or other and would appoint hard left liberals to the Supreme Court. You get the picture. Her presidency would, in effect, have been Obama third term.
Besides all that, I had absolutely no trust in her word. I was afraid of her greed and feared her vindictiveness.
So, with all his flaws — and they are many — I voted for Trump. As did enough other Americans to give him a comfortable victory in the electoral college. We voters sort of reversed the old adage — better the devil you know than the devil you don’t know. In this case, we rejected the devil we knew, simply because we knew her too well.
I got a chuckle election night when my daughter Becky, a wonderful woman and nurse who lives in Jefferson Parish, called me. Becky knew of my feelings about both candidates and that I’d told her I wasn’t voting for anybody for president. She had essentially agreed that both candidates were extremely poor choices.
But she called to say she knows I love her unconditionally so she wanted to admit she’d voted for Trump. “Well, sweetheart, so did I,” I told her.
But what have we Trump voters done? Have we elected a man who will truly strive to bring the country together, as he promised in his victory speech? Will he stop uttering his mean spirited verbal attacks on a good section of our American population? Will he refrain from going after anyone who levels the slighted criticism of him? Will he surround himself with wise advisors who can tell him how foreign policy really works?
We can only pray that he will. He, along with a Republican Senate and House, has a historic opportunity to accomplish much in these very difficult times. It’s up to him. As the French told the US after the Louisiana Purchase: “You have yourselves a bargain. It’s up to you to make the most of it.”