I was proud to be an American.
I was proud to say that I lived in the land of the free and the home of the brave. I was proud to say that democracy reigned in my country; that every man and every woman was free to have their own opinion; that every religion could practice what it pleased; that every citizen could achieve their dream; that every race could live in harmony.
But I lived in a bubble. I lived in a false ideal. I lived in a place that, apparently, only half of Americans actually want to achieve.
I now realize what it truly means to be an American.
It means that some people want equality, and others are able to overlook that to get the health care system they want. That people can care so much about the numbers, the money, the debt, the economics of it all that they can overlook the fact that Donald J. Trump only cares about white males.
To everyone who voted for Mr. Trump (and to everyone who didn’t vote at all) I ask you this: how? How can you ignore the things he’s said and done to women? How can you ignore the fact that he wants to ban an entire religious group based off of extremists? How can you ignore his blatant generalizations of Hispanics? How can you ignore his flaming inability to hold his tongue? How can you ignore the things he’s said about veterans? How can you ignore what he’s said to the terminally ill and disabled? How can you ignore the fact that he has absolutely no experience in politics? How?
Because I genuinely, honestly, and respectfully am utterly baffled by this simple question. I have read articles, listened to friends, read the news, and I have yet to hear any argument for Mr. Trump that is not circular, racist, or ignorant of his white-supremacist ideals.
I get that you might vehemently disagree with the baggage the Clintons would bring to office—abortion, same-sex marriage, health care, the email scandal, infidelity, dishonesty, economics and more—but how can you choose Donald Trump?
How can you choose a man who has never placed a finger in politics before this election? How can you choose a man who will make Americans look like loud-mouthed racists to the rest of the world?
I am disappointed in my country. I am disappointed that racism is so alive that Donald Trump can be president. I fear what this means not only for America, but for the world. I fear what Mr. Trump will say in foreign meetings. Will he spill America’s greatest secrets? Shout indecencies at foreign leaders? Or will he represent our country in a respectable fashion?
Watch the debates—the former will be true. And the world is looking to Donald Trump as the man who represents me and you.
In the end, I'm not afraid of the polices Mr. Trump will enact (thank God for checks and balances). I'm afraid of the racist America I woke up to this morning, and the blind hatred or unintentional racism and sexism many Americans voted for when they marked Donald J. Trump on their ballot.
Because I was proud to be an American. Today, I am not so sure.