When I was working (I retired in 2017) I worked in the Health Care field. A career choice one would assume would require a healthy dose of compassion and empathy. After all, you spend each working day trying to help people feel better. I had several co-workers who identified as Christian. When Donald Trump began running for President many of those Christian co-workers said they would vote for him. How could they be so fooled I thought, and not be able to see that Trump did not embrace Christian values?
I spent the next year trying to help them see. I tried everything I could think of. Every argument, every example I found was of no use. They wouldn’t listen. They voted for him and he became President. Then I thought, okay, now they will begin to see. They’ll know now that he’s not the President they thought he would be. Well he didn’t disappoint. In fact Trump exceeded my expectations for what kind of president he would be. Sadly, he exceeded the expectation of my co-workers as well.
Five million more people voted for Trump in this election than last. Five Million. Call me naive, but this shocked me. Now I am finally seeing the truth. I assumed that Christians would have values far removed from Donald Trump. I also assumed Health Care Workers would have better values as well. Now I’m not talking about all Health Care Workers or all Christians. I’m talking about the ones who voted for Trump.
The truth is, They voted for Trump because they wanted him for President. Their values, values that they perceive to be Christian values align perfectly with Donald Trump. They embrace fear and hatred. They embrace racism and bigotry and xenophobia. My assumption that they were somehow being fooled by him was dead wrong. I’m the one who couldn’t see. I’m the one who didn’t understand. I’m the one who was fooled.
When I hear people talking about healing the country, I wonder if those folks are naive like I was. Good people have been trying to get Trump supporters to understand for the last four years and the problem has only grown larger. More people embrace fear and hatred than ever before. Five million more. I’ve been trying to hang on to hope. But it becomes increasingly difficult. I don’t believe for a moment that because Trump leaves the White House that things will get better, that somehow we’ll heal. You can’t heal from something you agree with. After spending your life fearing and hating others you don’t simply wake up one day and find that you now love and care for them. I’m not sure where we’re going in this country, and I will try to keep hanging on to the hope that people will change, but the outlook sure is bleak.