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How to Manage the Unspeakable Rage You Feel at LGBTs Who Voted Trump

Daniel Berman

"This is a liberation of unprecedented heights." ...Is it?

For everyone I know, a Trump presidency is not cause for celebration. It's cause for concern, a cause for protest, a call to action, but no one in my life is remotely happy at what went down election night.

That's not the case, obviously, for millions around the country. And while most of the people waving their 'Make America Great Again' XXXL T-shirts in the air are white, straight, cisgender--you know, "classically American," if we just ignore the Native Americans and the black people--there are some LGBT* folks who are also basking in the future glow of a Trump-Pence White House. According to The New York Timesexit polls, Trump scored 14% of the LGBT vote.

Related | Gays for Trump: Why Some LGBTQ Americans Are Voting for The Donald

The pro-Trump Facebook group LGBTrump posted this not-at-all-petty statement following the news of Trump's victory:

"Tonight the nation elected a candidate that will not only protect the LGBT community, but the nation as a whole. Tonight, I am able to say something I have waited a long time to say - 'I told you so.' When LGBTrump was formed last summer and I endorsed Trump last June, LGBTrump supporters were mocked and I was laughed at. But we didn't care. LGBTrump saw something that the media, the party establishments, and the LGBT Left did not want to see - a candidate who unlocked Americans from the chains of identity politics and gave a voice to working America. Trump's victory tonight will usher in a new era of politics - an era in which your identity does not determine your ideology and an era is which the needs of the nation are placed before the needs of special interests. To the Beltway bandits this is scary as hell. To the American people this is a liberation of unprecedented heights."

I could feel the rage bubbling up inside me just reading this, like:

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Then I realized, of course this is a liberating moment for some people. People who don't know what oppression is.

If your idea of being liberated is an end to political correctness, then you have never experienced a moment of real oppression in your entire goddamn life. And this "liberation" isn't "scary as hell" for the "Beltway bandits." It's scary as hell for people being reduced to buzzwords like "identity politics."

While Trump's election is very humbling for liberal and progressive America and embarrassing for the mainstream media, it's terrifying for LGBTQ people, Muslims, immigrants...basically anyone who's not "classically American"--if we just ignore those lousy immigrants, the pilgrims.

After a year that included anti-trans bathroom bills, the deadliest mass shooting in American history, and frankly, an underwhelming Lady Gaga album, to face the GOP sweeping all three branches of government leaves us at an incredible loss. If the GOP wants to repeal federal marriage equality, they would have several paths to do so. And how would those LGBTrumps feel if their marriage was invalidated?

Related | 5 Ways the Trump Presidency Could Affect LGBT Rights

Aside from the possible ramifications of a Trump presidency, the fact that he ran a campaign based on hate, discrimination, and fear-mongering has only served to further embolden the white nationalist, alt-right faction that's quickly becoming the face of the GOP--and those folks don't really care for the gays, btw--while creating a cultural climate in which people who have borne the brunt of the Trump campaign's misdirected ire have a legitimate fear for their lives and their futures.

To be fair, I should acknowledge that the LGBTQ community, after all, is not a monolith; we disagree on a number of things, even how many letters to use in this increasingly antiquated acronym. The LGBTrumps had their own reasons to vote for Trump--like his hazily-defined tax plan, his hazily-defined economic plan, or his even hazier promise to make America "great" again, which we all know is code for "Fuck Barack Obama." And then of course there's his nonexistent experience in foreign affairs.

Really, there are any number of reasons that don't explicitly have to deal with the preservation of whiteness or a glaring lack of awareness why an LGBT person cast their vote for Trump--let's just not pretend that his "record" on LGBT rights had anything to do with it.

But because this is still America, everyone is entitled to their opinion, no matter how much you disagree with it. And your rage and my rage won't do anything to change the fact that our world has changed dramatically overnight.

Related | 13 Things Ruined by the 2016 Election

I'll leave you with the words of still-President Obama from his speech yesterday:

Sometimes you lose an argument. Sometimes you lose an election. The path that this country has taken has never been a straight line. We zig and zag, and sometimes we move in ways that some people think is forward and others think is moving back. [...]

That's the way politics works sometimes. We try really hard to persuade people that we're right. And then people vote. And then if we lose, we learn from our mistakes, we do some reflection, we lick our wounds, we brush ourselves off, we get back in the arena. We go at it. We try even harder the next time.

It's not time to get mad. It's time to try harder.

Related | Here's What We Can Do When the Trump Administration Challenges LGBTQ Rights

[h/t] NewNowNext

*I'm pretty sure it's just G...and I guess Caitlyn Jenner?

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