By now, it is over. The election race ended and the excitement has subsided. Surprisingly, Donald Trump is the president elect. Not Hillary Clinton. <<We should make sure that he feels welcomed, because his success is our success,>> they say. Really? Did I miss something? Has he shown any respect or did he welcome the diversity a Western country - especially the United States of America - should be proud of? This is a European take on the events during the last week.
First things first!
People in Europe are against the candidate they have not voted for. Even after the election is over. I remember vividly protesting against the Austrian government every Thursday long after it has taken office in early 2000. And I remember that it was cold back then. So, as a European, I understand the people walking in the streets of major US-cities chanting <<Not my president!>>. Because what really happened - and is still about to happen - is that our society has gotten divided. Not by a democratic vote, but by losing faith. By losing to the globalization - or the lack of a coherent political strategy to cope with it. Everyone wants to see his/her country in great shape - <<great again>> as some say. But we are not going to get there by polarizing the people in order for them to vote.
Donald Trump does not understand!
Not being a politician has its advantages. The voting population does not consider you to be a part of the system. But in order to be successful, you need to know how the system works. And knowing the system, Donald Trump should have been aware of the consequences his words have. Now, he is confronted with a socially divided USA and a world population that is skeptical towards him, to put it positively. When it comes to taking responsibility instead of cheap shots at his opponents, he still needs to deliver.
Let’s be fair to him!
Granted, Donald Trump won the election. But does that mean that everything he said is erased like on a clean slate? Does that mean that suddenly he becomes the moderate president of all? No! Because word do matter. People have gotten offended. Geopolitics are unstable and people outside of the United States have wondered, in which cave Mr. Trump has been hiding all those years. To ignore the women’s dignity and the climate change smells of incompetence and of a backward minded world view.
A leap of faith!
Usually, when a new government takes office, everyone talks about the leap of faith we should grant new politicians. Usually, I would agree. But not this time. The burned bridges Donald Trump has left cannot be rebuilt on faith. It is Donald Trump who should grant us a giant leap of faith to rebuild trust among American citizens and the rest of the world. Maybe then, and only then, the mistrust towards Donald Trump starts to decrease …