Growing intolerance provides an opportunity

DSC_0611“I, Donald J. Trump, do solemnly swear that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United States, and will, to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.”

After those words were spoken under oath on Friday Jan. 20, the power of the Executive Branch transferred to Trump, to many Americans’ dissatisfaction. According to the polls, Trump entered office with the lowest approval rating of any president in the last 40 years.

Even though surveys done by Washington Post and CNN both claim the majority of Americans are optimistic about the president’s economic agenda, Trump’s hateful words, actions, and intentions prompted hundreds of thousands of people around the world to protest.

Organized marches against oppression took place all over the US, shattering the estimated number of participants. The organizers of the Women’s March on Bellingham estimated 3,000-5,000 participants, but marchers Facebook posts claimed more than 6,000 marchers participated. Marches in Los Angeles and Washington, D.C., both had over twice as many participants than estimated as well.

What these protests show is the growing intolerance many are having with the way our country is being run. The morning after protesting, Trump tweeted, “Watched protests yesterday but was under the impression that we just had an election! Why didn’t these people vote? Celebs hurt cause badly.” and four minutes later tweeted, “Wow, television ratings just out: 31 million people watched the Inauguration, 11 million more than the very good ratings from 4 years ago!”

Whether you can successfully put Trump’s words into some sort of context, it is apparent he and his administration are flustered by the negativity surrounding his inauguration. Members of his administration made false claims after the inauguration regarding attendance, then proceeded to accuse people in the briefing room of “deliberately false reporting.” After repeatedly calling out most mainstream media as “dishonest media,” and “fake news,” media outlets willing to take him seriously are dwindling.

Even though Trump is coming into office at a time when the US is not at war and our economy is growing, there is a lot of pressure on the president in his first 100 days in office, pressure put on by his supporters, by his political adversaries, and by the media. The president’s agenda over the next 100 days and the way we, the people, choose to react will go a long way in how the next four years play out. Now is certainly not the time to stop participating in politics.

The current transition of power will inevitably bring about a transition in the way society behaves. The important thing to remember is that we have the chance to create a positive transition. The marches done on Jan. 21 will go down in history as a massive expression of disappointment in our political system, now is time for our community and country to provide hope for a brighter future.


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