I Thought We Had More Time

Friday, 20 January 2017

When I started writing RESET I thought we'd have more time before the extreme-right populism took hold. I thought we'd be able to stop it before it started by changing the way we talk to and about people. I thought we'd be able to heal the divisions in our societies before they opened up into gaping chasms in communities. 

I was wrong.

Today the United States of America is swearing in an unashamed liar, bigot and hypocrite as its Commander in Chief. A man whose campaign blunders would have meant electoral decimation under any normal circumstances will pledge allegiance to the constitution and promise to uphold it. A man who has shown himself to be so thin-skinned that he routinely paints himself orange to hide the translucence will get the nuclear codes.

By any measure, this is not good.

But it's not the end.

Millions of people around the world who do not identify with the poisonous, divisive rhetoric spewed by Trump and his cronies will spend today, tomorrow, and the next four years resisting him. They will need all of the support they can muster, and it is down to every last one of us to provide that support in whatever ways we can. Authoritarian regimes are on the rise, but they can be defeated if enough of us reject their narrative of division and produce our own counter-narrative of tolerance and compassion. There are far more of us than there are of them, and now is the time to show it.

There is no conscionable alternative.

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