I am sure many of us have learned this the hard way. Here is how it was driven home to me.
I had a friend when I was a young adult, she was a few years older. A little bit of a friend/mentor/companion. Every time she had a breakup, changed a job, moved from one apartment to another ~ she expressed anger, blame and resentment. Pretty consistently. Everything was someone else’s fault, or something was unfair, etc. We all know the type.
I stood by her, she was my roommate for a while when she was in between girlfriends. I felt like I was being a loyal friend. That was my self conceit.
Then, it was my turn. She decided that someone else, who I was in conflict, was a better person to be friends with and all of a sudden she accused me of a sin! I was no longer a friend, I was untrustworthy, and there it was. I was shocked, shocked I tell you. And it was because of my arrogance, thinking that I could personally be strong enough to overcome her pattern. I was so wrong.
We all want to believe that an angry, bitter, self aggrandizing, blamer, etc, person really has a good heart. We/I want to think that something good can come out of this person. Even when that person has spent years telling us who he/she is.
Trump has an entire lifetime of telling us who he is. He lied throughout his campaign, he did not campaign with the country in good faith. He thinks climate change is a conspiracy theory. He declared bankruptcy several times. He courted the alt-right. He called Mexicans rapists, said he wants to ban all Muslims from the US, and I can’t even describe how badly he talks about and treats women.
Before he was a candidate he was the same person. He was a womanizer who grabbed women as he felt like and bragged about it. He was a businessman who did not pay his contractors, who structured his bankruptcies so that he made millions and his investors lost millions. He did not pay taxes and brags about it. He engaged in racist practices to determine who could live in his apartment buildings.
That is who he is. There is no mask that will come off. This is who our next President will be. He WILL damage women’s access to reproductive health. He WILL undo regulations that protect our environment and help prevent climate change. He WILL hurt LGBT people and their/our families. He WILL do everything he can to reduce the number of Muslims in our country and will greatly damage our relationships with several countries as a result. He WILL court Putin and he WILL damage NATO. He WILL do serious harm to the SCOTUS and any recent rulings that expanded rights for LGBT people and Reproductive health. The list goes on and on.
Do not expect otherwise. There are no little signals that he will be a kinder, gentler President than he was a candidate. He will be exactly the person he has been his entire life. I learned this lesson several times before it took. Because of those early lessons, painful as they were, I am ready today (or as ready as I am going to be). He is who he is, this is a Trump version of being true to himself.
We will be more prepared as individuals and as a community for the coming changes if we get real about what the situation really is.
I want to thank Maya Angelou for putting it so succinctly. Trump has told us who he is. Let’s believe him and be prepared.