He started his campaign by branding undocumented workers as criminals and rapists.
He mocked a reporter’s disability by, as Ann Coulter put it, imitating a “standard retard.” He dismissed tough questions from a reporter by suggesting she was merely on her period. He bulldozed his GOP primary rivals through juvenile name calling, teetering over the edge of civility. He fanned stereotypes of black communities to white audiences. Next we learned about his pastime of sexual assault and harassment. Then he won.
The despair roiling through American society in the wake of Tuesday’s election is rooted in the hatred that Trump represents and the repugnant tactics he deployed through the cycle. The pain is visceral given the deeply personal level of offence taken by many citizens over his remarks. The spontaneous protests that have broken out in cities across the country have little to do with losing the election. The Democratic Party in particular, and progressivism in general, stand to greatly benefit from a period of introspection and renewal that this defeat will bring. Rather, the protests are a gallant reminder to the world and country that the majority of citizens are not okay with the hate and vulgarity rife in America and embodied by Trump’s campaign. Bridging our political differences is not easy. But bridging our social differences may be impossible.