When I awoke this morning, I did not expect to see Trump heavily in the lead for the Presidency. Before I had even set foot on my train, he had done it: Donald Trump was President of the United States.
As I’m not an American, you might think, “why are you whining? This has nothing to do with you”, but it does. The USA is the most powerful country in the world, and one with close ties to the UK. We feel the effects of Trump’s Presidency all around the world and on that note, we have several responses from key people on the Trump victory.
First of all, George Takei took to Twitter to try and calm frayed nerves following the Trump victory, which many have seen as a step backwards for the rights of minorities.
He wrote: “I am addressing this to all who voted to defeat Donald Trump and what he represents. We may not have prevailed, but we must not despair. Many of you are, like me, in a state of shock. This does not feel like the America you love and honor. We are in unchartered waters. In times like these we must reaffirm the values we cherish and have fought for: equality, justice, the care of our planet.”
“We must stand up defiantly to any dark or divisive acts, and look out for the most vulnerable among us. It is more important than ever. Within our hearts we know the society we wish to live in. No one can take that vision from us. We are each of us keepers of that promise.”
“This country has seen wars and grave injustices, slavery and even civil war in its past. Yet we found our way through. We will now, too. Hold your loved ones close. Tell them that it is in times of sadness and in the toughest of days where we often find our true mettle.”
As I mentioned, there are numerous concerns for Muslims, and people of colour in general, as well as the LGBT community. Given Trump’s collection of racist comments, and his VP’s suppor of shock therapy for gay people, these are valid concerns to have.
Human Rights Campaign President Chad Griffin has issued a statement in the wake of Trump’s victory: “Throughout our nation’s history, we’ve faced devastating setbacks in our pursuit of a more perfect union,’ said HRC President Chad Griffin. ‘But even in the darkest of moments, Americans have summoned the courage and persistence to fight on. The results of tonight’s presidential election require us to meet tomorrow with the same resolve and determination.”
“This is a crucial moment for our nation and for the LGBTQ movement. The election of a man who stands opposed to our most fundamental values has left us all stunned. There will be time to analyze the results of this election, but we cannot afford to dwell. We must meet these challenges head on. Over the last 18 months, Donald Trump and Mike Pence have intentionally sowed fear and division for cynical political purposes. They now face a decision about whether they will also govern that way.”
“We hope, for the sake of our nation and our diverse community – which includes women, people of color, those with disabilities, immigrants, and people of all faiths and traditions – they will choose a different path. For our part, HRC will continue our fight for equality and justice for all with greater urgency and determination than ever before.”
“We must. Lives literally depend on it. Despite the outcome of this presidential race, we know that the tide has irreversibly turned in favor of LGBTQ equality. Today, we draw strength from the vast majority of Americans who believe that our lives and rights are worth fighting for.”
“Thanks to you and your tireless work, we deployed the largest get out the vote effort in our organization’s history. In North Carolina, it appears we have defeated the hateful Governor Pat McCrory and helped elect Roy Cooper to repeal HB2. We were proud to support Hillary Clinton, and she made history as the most pro-equality candidate to ever run for president of the United States. The defeats we have suffered tonight demonstrate that our future victories will require us to dig deeper and work harder to continue bending the moral arc of the universe toward justice and equality.”
“We must fight to protect our progress, and to limit the damage that Donald Trump has promised. To every LGBTQ person across this nation feeling stunned and disheartened, and questioning if they have a place in our country today, I say this: You do. Don’t ever let anybody tell you otherwise. Be bold, be strong, and continue to stand up for the principles that have always made America great.”
“At a time like this, we don’t slow down. We double down. Tomorrow, HRC will set to work once again, undeterred and focused on our mission to realize a world in which every single LGBTQ person is safe and equal and valued.”
And finally, we have a statement from our very own leader here in the UK, Theresa May. While May has been critical of some of the statements Trump has made in the past, she did congratulate him on his victory and was keen to stress that the UK and USA would still be partners heading into this uncertain future.
She said: “I would like to congratulate Donald Trump on being elected the next president of the United States, following a hard-fought campaign.Britain and the United States have an enduring and special relationship based on the values of freedom, democracy and enterprise. We are, and will remain, strong and close partners on trade, security and defence. I look forward to working with President-elect Donald Trump, building on these ties to ensure the security and prosperity of our nations in the years ahead.”