Donald Trump elected as US president.
A famous man once said, “We create our own demons.” On November 4, 2008, the United States of America (USA) elected their first African American president -Barrack H. Obama. Obama’s presidency was marked by economic progress, tolerance, promotion of gender equality, anti-racism and the legalization of the same sex marriage.
After eight years of being governed by a left-wing liberal, the American people elected a racist and xenophobic candidate “whose defining principal is the opposite of everything Obama stood for” –Donald J. Trump.
The whole world was outraged by the unsettling outcome of the 2016 US elections; but was it really a surprise, Or a ‘Whitelash’ to the liberal African American Presidency?
The scourge of racism has plagued the United States since its inception and with it slavery reared its ugly head.
After a long and bloody civil war –which almost dismembered the country- slavery was abolished by the enactment of President Abraham Lincoln’s 13th amendment, which stated “all men are created equal”; but unfortunately it was not enforced in letter and spirit.
Afterwards started the Jim Crow era; marred by racial segregation, unfair persecution and discrimination against the African American race; which lead to dawn of the civil rights movement, which ended with the enactment of President John F. Kennedy’s civil rights law -granting the African Americans the right to vote.
Although the USA freed itself from racism constitutionally, but there still remains a deep-rooted detestation for the African American race in the mind of an average American conservative; which recently exhibited itself in the form of police brutality and racially targeted hate crimes.
Throughout the Obama presidency, there was a growing sentiment in the general American public that Since George H.W. Bush left office in 1993 America had been ruled by a spin-obsessed sex addict, a dangerous halfwit and an incompetent African American.
Against the backdrop of growing religious radicalism, global terrorism, xenophobia and racial profiling; Obama set out to promote gun control and urged the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) to strike down the ban on same-sex marriage while his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, strong-armed the USA in Syria.
The cauldron of hyper-nationalism, racism and xenophobia fulminated and found expression in Donald Trump.
Donald Trump triumph
It was interesting, after Donald Trump triumphed in the New Hampshire primary, how many of his voters complained of feeling that America was being kicked around in the world.
A great nation that is being forced to confront its global impotence is one for whom the bombastic Mr. Trump held inevitable appeal.
This was the second time Donald Trump ran for president. The first time he ran from the US reform party in 1999 but eventually withdrew from the race due to ‘differences with party policy’.
The main vote bank of the party was Neo-Nazis, Communists and Klansmen. To Trump’s advantage, xenophobia was on the rise in the country, especially with the instability of the US economy in recent years and growing un-employment;
he played just that by talking about his infamous wall, strict border regulations, unrealistic plans to jack up the economy and blaming everything wrong under the sun on immigrants –which he ,ironically, is one himself.
The whole world is still in denial about how the ‘Donald’ swindled his way into the white house, but the truth is, they failed to see the writing on the wall, which is the ‘whitelash’ of the right wing conservative against a left leaning African American presidency.
It can be understood in the words of US President Lyndon B. Johnson “There is no Negro problem. There is no Southern problem. There is no Northern problem. There is only an American problem.”
Abdul Hameed Bukhari is a student of Law at International Islamic University,
president at Youth Writers Association,
member at International Iqbal Society and National Youth Assembly.