Unlike many people I know, who understandably turned their backs on it, I watched Trump’s Inauguration this morning. I sat there with Miles and we watched it together. (Well, he sorta-kinda watched it while playing with his trains.) I felt the need to sit through it, though, to experience the excruciating reality of this new era we are embarking on because Miles cannot–my family and so many others cannot–escape the consequences of it.
At one point, Miles asked me who Donald Trump was. “Who that, Mommy?”
I cringed as I replied, “That’s our new President.”
“I want a present, too,” he said. He’s been obsessed with presents ever since Christmas.
“No, I said President. Not present. This man is definitely not a present.”
That was the sum total of our conversation because he’s only two and totally oblivious, but it saddened me that I was not watching the inauguration of a President I could be proud of and whom I knew had the best interests of my child, and all of our children, in mind.
Because I have absolutely no faith that President Trump will do anything positive for Miles at all. Within minutes of being sworn in, WhiteHouse.gov removed all mention of civil rights, LGBTQ rights, Climate Change, and any mention of Black people, minorities, or people of color. Totally wiped, and replaced with minimal content that expressed support for higher numbers of police, untrue statistics about crime rates in inner cities, and incredibly frustrating statements about how the Climate Act is bad for America. And, unbelievably, WhiteHouse.gov now features promotional statements about Melania’s jewelry line. Her freakin’ QVC jewelry line.
If nothing about this campaign and ensuing presidency has worried you, this should. Sure, it’s just a website but also a sign of what’s to come: Trump seems to want to erase all of the positive progress that we have made for racial justice, environmental science and conservation, and equality. And why not? None of those issues have ever been issues for him as a white, unscrupulous, over-privileged, greedy conman who’s cheated small business owners, blue collar workers, and hundreds of others out of money that he owed them.
I worry today for my son. I worry today for all children, for our planet, for our future. I do not for one moment think that Trump is going to deliver on any of the promises he made to people who believed him when he said he cared. I do, however, think that he will do his best to deliver on promises to further destroy our planet, further divide people along racial lines, and to create a police state where individual freedoms and diversity are not valued unless they somehow happen to be in line with his personal, political, or business interests.
I truly hope that I am wrong. Because it’s terrifying, really. Absolutely terrifying.