fyi I edited the “Every election” post. It was bothering me for a couple of days and so I went back in and changed some things. I’ll put the changes here so no one will miss them. Sorry, but I get kind of obsessed with editing sometimes.
“[Trump]’s a marketer. His big lies are like his buildings: he doesn’t build them, he just slaps his brand on them and tricks the press into promoting them for free.”
Full Frontal December 5, 2016, Samantha Bee
It’s nothing new to Donald Trump. Did you hear the rest of the Republicans who ran for president? Have you listened to conservative talk radio at all for the last decade? And it scares the bejeezus out of me. Every four years.
You can rest assured that if Hillary Clinton had won, I would probably be upset by some of her staffing/cabinet choices (I mean, I was upset by her choice of vice president, for starters). Even more than Obama’s (and, let’s face it, those were problematic as well).
The political system is corrupt and problematic in itself.
Hillary Clinton gets more criticism for everything because she is a woman. Because she is a woman, she is placed under immense scrutiny. It’s not that she does anything that much differently from other politicians, it’s that we don’t pay attention to the other politicians as much. We don’t hold them to the same standard. Do those other politicians have conflicting interests tied up with corporations and banks and special interests that influence and undermine their supposed political and moral ideals? Yes, they do; they rather do. And we’re lucky if that is the only problem with them. But while this is criticized in others, in Hillary it is a deal-breaker. Hillary makes people uneasy because, by scrutinizing her, we are made aware of politics-as-usual and how horribly corrupt the whole system is. And it is corrupt, and she is a master politician, and her choices for White House staff and cabinet wouldn’t be saintly in the least. They would be politics as usual, and very much in need of criticism.
And if Mitt Romney or John McCain had been elected in previous years, their staff choices would have been problematic, too. Problematic tending towards actively oppressive, under a thin veneer of respectability.
But I sincerely doubt anyone of these candidates would have matched Donald Trump in his outrageous or dangerous staff and cabinet choices. None of them have matched Donald Trump in his open shamelessness, and certainly not in his absolutely mindboggling lack of qualifications, his utter disregard of basic democratic principles/establishments, or his irresponsible incitements to violence and support of white nationalism.
I would have problems with the American political system, regardless of the election outcome. I would have severe reservations about Hillary Clinton. I would be literally afraid of what a Republican win meant in the case of John McCain (& Sarah Palin, never forget!) or Mitt Romney. I would feel in danger then.
But Trump? I’ve lost all sense of where to find safety, or if that was an illusion all along.
Which was replaced with:
I have extreme privilege in being white. Nobody has ever once looked at me and thought I was other than white. I have no pigment whatsoever and am constantly sunburning through SPF 50- I am unavoidably white. And I have extraordinary privilege for that.
I can pass. Not for very long, and not very well. But I am privileged to be able to pass at all. I do not proclaim my identities in places where I don’t feel safe, and people don’t necessarily peg me as anything specific on their own. I can fly under the radar, or, well, it’s more like people can see me but they don’t necessarily know what the hell I am. Most of the time I can pass because people write me off. They see a woman, and think she is rather odd. As long as I go along with what they want and act invisible -as long as I appear nonthreatening to them- they don’t pay attention to me. That’s as close to passing as I realistically get.
And every intentional act of invisibility is an act of erasure. It’s being so afraid of what other people may do to you that you do it to yourself. It’s a kind of death. It’s, “people would kill me for being trans, therefore I must bury the trans part of myself.” It erases you from the inside, and what is left of you is a lie.
It’s like The Nothing from The Neverending Story: “A hole would be something, no, it was Nothing! And it got bigger, and bigger…” ; “a force of absolute oblivion that erases everything and everyone it touches from existence and leaves no trace whatsoever… Every Fantasian that it erases gets turned into lies and deceits that manifest in the normal world….” (/here).
That’s no way to live. That’s no life at all.
And sometimes to be invisible means to not interfere. To not speak up when hate is acting all around you? To be therefore complicit in the violence? To enable the perpetrators? To not protect the victims? How can I do that? How could I do that and live with myself? How could I ever expect anyone to stand up for me?
That’s not how this works!
And it’s all besides the point anyway, as my kids cannot pass, so that’s not even an option for them. Nor can I act invisible and still secure the supports and services necessary for us as autistic persons to survive.
But every four years (at least) I wonder, if the tide turns, what other options do I have? and How can I/ Can I keep my kids safe?
It’s not a new question for me at all.