Our Past and Our Future

I wonder how many people voted for Donald Trump and how many were voting for change.

Those who voted for Trump might already be disappointed because he seems to have reversed central campaign positions on the reality of climate change, for example, or prosecuting Hillary Clinton. These people must wonder what, if he feels so little loyalty to campaign positions so soon after the election, else he will do. 

Those who hoped for change might have a different reaction. Some might dismiss these shifts as something done by many, most, or even all politicians, who say anything to get elected and then govern in a different way. These might also think that he could still produce the change that he had been promising.

Nevertheless, Trump’s election seems to be a rejection of President Obama’s agenda. His efforts were certainly shaped, at least in part, by the Republican recalcitrance. At the same time, President Obama seemed to acknowledge the relationship of this nation to the rest of the world, and he brought an intelligence and civility to the White House that even Bill Clinton didn’t seem to have.

At the same time, his presence suggested a more equitable, and hopeful, future. While he was often considered our first African American president, he was more than that. His ethnic identity, which was a mix of African and European American origins, simultaneously acknowledged our past culture diversity, which existed before the first European colonists arrived, and an increasingly diverse cultural future.

My fellow Americans surely can’t reject that.

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