by Dylan Friedman ’21
Biden has won the election, and Trump’s blatant attempts at a coup are failing miserably. Of course, the Senate is still up in the air, and if it doesn’t go blue, Republicans will do everything in their power to obstruct the Biden administration, just as they did during eight years of the Obama presidency.
Republicans will feel emboldened because of the fact that a large portion of the country voted for Trump, and these people aren’t going away. Plenty of Trump’s base genuinely believe the election was stolen from them. Of course, this is nonsense. These accusations of “voter fraud” have been thoroughly debunked. This is just a glimpse of the greater problem facing America today, which is Trumpism and the rise of the far right. Even though the country is objectively more left leaning, the policies that have been implemented don’t reflect that as it represents a much more right-wing ideology. However, it seems like for the past several years, the right has gone off the deep end. During the Trump administration, the Republican party has shown their true colors in such a blatant and bombastic way that it is prudent to never forget Republicans’ actions (and often collective silence in the face of Trump’s corruption and cruelty) these past four years. They might try and approach more moderately-inclined people with calmer and “reasonable” rhetoric, but this is just a facade.
Trump has been a revolving door of scandals, idiocy, and corruption. Never mind the fact that China has simply gotten more powerful and is orchestrating soft imperialism in Africa. Never mind the fact that he has objectively mishandled the pandemic worse than all other comparable nations. Never mind the fact that he gave massive tax cuts to the rich. Oh? Your check is bigger due to less taxes? He simply deferred the payroll tax. It’s still a deferral that workers will have to pay next year. Additionally, the corporate taxes are permanent and the personal taxes are temporary (they expire in 2025 – “coincidentally,” immediately after what could have been a second Trump term). Increasing high deficits will negatively affect workers in the future. He’s a conman, and his supporters have been duped.
Now, is Biden amazing? No, not really, but he is simply far better than Trump on virtually every issue. He could do nothing and still be better than Trump. Regardless, Biden’s attempts at “unity” and “healing” don’t really address the core problems here. Even progressives are sick of the troubling hyperpolarization in this country. Most don’t think someone is inherently a bad person for being a conservative. However, simply reverting to “normalcy” just creates the conditions that allowed people like Trump to succeed in the first place. Imagine how much more damage would occur if someone as morally bankrupt as he appears on the political scene but is much more cold and calculated?
Trump is unlikely to run again in 2024, as he will probably make some excuse that he can’t because of the deep state or something, but people definitely should be wary. The Supreme Court is still heavily slanted to conservatives after all. Democrats have a lot of work to do. Currently, the establishment Democrats are too elitist and out of touch. They lack real grassroots organization. They need to stop adopting the Republican framing. Certain progressive policies such as drug decriminalization and a higher minimum wage were popular across the board, yet they blamed the progressives for the election being this close. There’s really no point in trying to move the party further to the right. It clearly doesn’t work. Sometimes it can just be as simple as presenting Trump supporters and the like with objective concrete facts to get them out of the pool of misinformation. To give them a compassionate helping hand. Then again, sometimes, it’s not that simple. Regardless, the legacy of Trump is not going away.