The upcoming US Presidential Election is not just a huge deal for those of us who live in the United States. It’s grabbing headlines around the world, and most everyone is watching to see what will happen on November 8th.
My travels over the past few months have seen the topic of politics come up numerous times–foreigners wanting to know both my political stance and what I think will happen to the United States and the rest of the world based on the election results.
It’s no secret that I’m a Democrat. I’ve brought up politics and my bleeding-heart liberal ways on this blog before. I don’t hold people’s politics against them; and I hope no one will hold mine against me. My feeling is that politics are exciting to talk about and debate over, and as long as we can have intelligent conversations and discourse about them, we’re all good.
While I’ll be casting my vote for Hillary Clinton in a couple short weeks, the outcome of the election is still one big question mark, and that causes me much anxiety. Why? Because I’ve thought about a world in which Donald Trump is president of our country and that scares me beyond belief.
This is a man who has talked about building a wall so Mexicans can’t come in. Who has talked about sending Muslims “home.” Who doesn’t want foreigners coming to our country–a country that was founded by foreigners who were escaping religious persecution. What happened to “give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free”? No way. Not with Donald Trump as President. Sorry, refugees, seek refuge elsewhere because America’s golden doors are shut.
In fact, tourists from Europe and Latin America “have said they will vacation elsewhere if Trump is elected because they loathe his anti-immigrant policies and think he stokes an atmosphere of racial profiling and distrust of foreigners.” (Source)
So, not only in Trump’s America do we close everyone out, meaning tourism in our own country takes a huge downfall because we don’t want to let anyone in, but what happens for Americans wanting to travel abroad?
If I imagine a hate-fueled Trump presidency, I see the US waging a ton of wars with various countries for reasons more asinine than the ones George W. Bush used to take us to endless wars. I see our military going into Muslim-majority countries with an ISIS presence, killing thousands of innocent people with the short-sighted view that we’ll get a few bad guys. Maybe the drone game will step up too, and we’ll start dropping them, killing even more people in the process.
Where does that leave us? Hated by most of the world’s population. Having traveled abroad during the Bush administration, not long after the US went to war in Afghanistan and Iraq, I know first-hand what it feels like to be typecast as a “typical” American, blindly following and believing in the shit my government does. I don’t want to live like that again.
The last thing that scares me is that he’s a total hothead. If you look at the way he behaves during debates or any sort of public event where he’s challenged even a little bit, his attitude changes drastically. He becomes childish–mocking, making awful remarks, and whining about not getting his turn. Exactly how will that go when he meets with other world leaders? There’s not even an ounce of diplomacy in his body–and I know that’s what gets conservatives off–“he tells it like it is,” but what happens when he “tells it like it is” to the wrong person and we catch fire as an entire nation for that?
I’m so scared about the world of trouble the United States will be in if there’s a Trump administration. It’ll severely limit tourism both to and from the United States. Even people I’ve met in the Netherlands and Pakistan recently were telling me they were all hoping for Hillary Clinton to win because they’re scared for their countries and their lives if Trump is our president.
It’s got to say something pretty loud and clear when most nations around the world are also weighing in on our election, hoping that Trump doesn’t get anywhere near the White House because the impacts of that will be grave for the entire world. As travelers and travel enthusiasts, I urge you to also consider this point when going to the polls on November 8th.