Buckle up, this is a sweary one…
I don’t know what I find more enraging right now, the hateful bile that spews forth from Donald Trump and the loathsome people emboldened by this victory, or the barrage of overwhelmingly privileged ‘liberal’ white men telling me that I’m naive to be in shock that this guy won, telling me to stop moaning and “do something”, telling me it’s all the left’s fault for not ‘making the argument’. Fuck you.
You know whose arguments and experiences are under-represented and under-valued time and again? Women, ethnic minorities, immigrants, refugees, LGBTQ+ people, disabled people and every other group whose safety and rights have been threatened by this result.
So may I suggest it is you who are the navel-gazers? May I suggest that your ‘doing something’ could be to shut up and make some space for those who don’t shout quite as loud as you? May I suggest that you consider the expression of fear and anger is not the same as ignorance or naivety? May I further suggest that the patriarchy and white privilege are ingrained in our lives that you are actually enacting them both right now without knowing?
So, congrats, you wrote your opinion piece on how to organise while the rest of us were experiencing the fear and empathy that comes with knowing a modicum of what it is to feel vulnerable (and I acknowledge I really do only know a fraction). Now shut up and listen for a minute!
I will not be shouted down from calling out racism and misogyny when I see it writ large in this way. When people hear a candidate call Mexicans rapists, call for an all-out ban on Muslims entering the country, deny that there is a problem with unarmed black men being killed by the police and do/say nothing when they are endorsed by the fucking Ku Klux Klan; when they hear him continuously assess women on their appearance and willingness to submit, and openly brag and sexual assault; when people see this and make the decision to STILL VOTE FOR HIM, because they think America needs “shaking up” or out of their own self interest, then however thoughtful and kind and well-meaning they may otherwise be they are also prepared to overlook this hate speech, this promise of descrimnation: it doesn’t matter enough to them.
That is racism, that is misogyny. It is homophobia, it is islamophobia. It just is. I’m not demonising, I’m calling a spade a fucking spade. My Nan was a bit racist and homophobic, she was also generous and kind and polite, but she was a bit racist and homophobic too.
No one is saying that half of the US electorate secretly wants to reinstate segregation or uses the N word casually I the privacy of their own home, but it seems to me that some would rather not admit to the malignant undercurrent of racism and sexism that has allowed this shitstorm to occur. They are uncomfortable with naming the prejudices that are so blatantly at work here. And if this is the case then I might suggest that it is them who are naive and living in their own privileged bubble?
A lot of people are racist, a lot of people are sexist – these people aren’t all poor, or white, or men but they do exist in their millions and I will be as angry as I like about it. I won’t shy away from using those words because they will offend and alienate people, I will scream them from fucking rooftops if I like because I’m enraged, and you should be too. I’m sick of those who have the power to speak not having the guts to call this bullshit out – the right aren’t afraid of offending people and they seem to be doing okay.
Look western society in the eye and see white supremacy and misogyny at every turn, then tell me to stop being so naive. I fucking dare you.