Company Trump Is Not America’s Problem

Donald Trump may be American, but it’s not a uramerikanisches problem. People like Le Pen, Petry and co hatred to everything that is not like you and thinks spread in Europe as well. Now it is up to us to be active – in the family, circle of friends and acquaintances -.

For the second time this year I went with an okayen feeling in the bed, with a sense of “be all right”. To wake up the next day and to determine: is just not. The first time was the day after the Brexit referendum on June 23. The second time November 9, for the Germans was a historical date – anyway and now also for the United States. Love trumps hate it was still on the rampage in a gay Club in Orlando this summer. Now hatred has triumphed, fear of change, the distrust. Donald Trump will be the next President of the United States of America.

For the second time this year I wondered as I and so many others that could deceive us. I am scientist and journalist a very good mix, actually, to analyze facts, classify, and especially polls critical to look at. Yet have I not of the calculated, what is happening now and am stumped: how could this happen? And what’s next? What can I do?

Unpleasant disputes

Because Donald Trump while as a uramerikanisches problem seems, home made more or less. He is not. Also here, in Germany, in Europe, people such as marine Le Pen, Viktor Orbán and Frauke Petry Hass everything that is not like you and thinks spread. Often we pat ourselves on the back, tell us that we are on the right side – we choose not AfD, we’re feminist * inside, we are for the rights of LGBT people. After the election in the United States, I think: maybe that’s not enough simply. Maybe we need to do more, are still political. And above all: expose us to opinions that are not ours. Talk not only with and to the already converted.

Too often we live in our little bubble. We surround ourselves with people who are similar to how we think, whether on the Internet or in the so-called “real” live. Sometimes the bubble bursts but unexpectedly – and this leads to uncomfortable, but interesting insights. My grandmother for example: one of my absolute favorite people. But we can’t get together on the issue of refugees. My grandma can or will not understand that people leave their country “and then let fulfil even their whole family!” She wipes away arguments like “But Grandma, you would want to have but also your family around you”. My grandmother, so she sees it, at that time during the war was also a refugee: from the Ruhr area they and many other children by “Children country sending” were sent to families on the land, far away from the constantly falling bombs. “At that time also we were bad, but we did it,” she says. You do not say: “The refugees today to be not so do”. But as it sounds. Will I have these discussions with my grandma? No. I do it anyway? Yes. Because as my grandmother many think.

Get out of the comfort zone

For my girlfriend Leonie, half who, the moment in which their bubble suddenly burst came after the Brexit referendum. As it turned out, a large part of her family in Wales for the Brexit had voted, completely unfazed by the fact that a part of the family – including Leonies father – in Germany and thus lives the EU. Nigel Farage call “to take back control” had just convinced. What the Brexit exactly, that Leonies relatives could not say her unfortunately.

To move in a bubble, is sometimes necessary, may be a protective mechanism. Many feminist and anti-racist activist * inside, for example, could not make their work, if they would not protect against certain opinions and people. And to entertain, with confident woman unleashed/racists/right-wing extremists is actually meaningless. Many people do not fall into these categories but just and it is worthwhile to at least attempt to talk with them. Because we need to talk again more, especially the people who actually don’t like we want in our bubble. As we are quite a different opinion. Often these people are not anonymous namely Wikitravellers on the Web or at Pegida demos, they are friend * inside, relatives, acquaintances. We need to talk to them, we listen to what they have to say – and then fight for our positions. In the worst case, nothing comes out here as the recognition that man is miles apart on this subject and will also never come together. In the best case, we convince our relation to them sometime to reconsider his or her position. In both cases but we have learnt: we have ourselves out of our comfort zone and now at least a clue what’s going on in the minds of others. And Yes, it’s often frustrating.

Promote democracy

Speeches and listen alone is not enough of course, they prevent any Trump, not Le Pen. No, we have to promote our European democracies enthusiastically. Democracy is a gift, but also it was won. And as you can see in Turkey, it is nothing that we should take for granted. We do that too often. We focus on being unhappy to ranting, instead of itself to tackle the policy and to fulfil our role as responsible citizens * in. We have a voice, and we should use that for constructive criticism.

With Donald Trump elected a President in a democratic election, who has no respect for democracy, its institutions and elected representatives * inside. Nevertheless, democracy means just that: ready to be, if the opponents win. Citizens * in a country to be ruled by a human, it rejects from deepest soul. My friend * Interior in Hungary, Poland and Turkey know how that feels. We will know only what are the lessons learned from choosing a Trump, in a few months, years. Until then we can start but ever: with us out of our comfort zone out move, to listen. Talking about what we stand for and why, with friend * inside, relatives, acquaintances. To be enthusiastic Democrat * inside. There are small steps, frustratingly small. But if we don’t start with ourselves – then where?

 

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