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“Not my president” is an ineffective and dangerous protest

Following President Trump’s election in November, many liberals began to champion the phrase “not my president” to protest a man they saw unfit to be president. The phrase soon became the battle cry for many of the political resistance movements that have sprung up in reaction to Trump’s presidency. Unfortunately, this chant prevents people from internalizing the fact that America elected a reality TV star as president. Trump is my president, Trump is your president, and we should use this fact to fuel our desire to inspire political change.

Obviously, everyone understands that legally, Donald Trump is their president, but for people to say that he doesn’t represent them because they didn’t vote for him and don’t identify with his policy is asinine. One of the responsibilities of being part of a democracy is understanding that each individual will not always get their way, but the American people as a whole will. Still an equally important aspect of democracy is the right to protest, and with this administration this right has never been more important. It is critical that liberals find a balance between these two conflicting ideologies. Liberals must internalize the fact that Trump is president and take their anger from that fact and protest.

When people utter “not my president” at protests they refuse to take any of the blame for Trump’s election. They separate themselves from Trump and act like he and his administration are the only problem with Washington. People need to realize that Trump is president largely due to failures of the Democratic Party. A party that, during its successful eight-year reign, isolated a large group of people in rural America enough for them to vote for Trump. Yes, they are the ones who voted for Trump, but to say that puts all the blame on them is rather simplistic. Trump became our president for a variety of different reasons including an anger towards the political ruling class and the continued neglect of the economic misfortune of many Americans.

Once people accept these facts, hopefully they can realize that Trump is their president, the president that represents them. This should be a scary thought. The fact that such a blatantly unqualified and hateful man represents the United States to the rest of the world should make us mad. It should make us take action, speak out against his administration, and protest. However, the public shouldn’t protest so that things will go back to the way they were, they should protest so that the system will change and Americans will never elect a man like this to represent them again.


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