I’m worried about the election. I’m trying not to be, and failing utterly.
It might be because, like so many people, I didn’t worry enough about the 2016 election. That isn’t to say that I wasn’t paying attention, or that I wasn’t in quiet, shocked awe at Donald Trump’s ascent ahead of time — my podcast history from that period would quickly put paid to any such suspicions. Like far too many others, though, I was convinced that Trump wouldn’t win because he seemed so obviously unelectable, so clearly unsuited for office. Who in their right minds would vote for him, I’d ask incredulously to people arguing he’d win.
(I remember, still, election night and the slow horror that crept over me as I realized he’d win. The feeling of betrayal, too; we’re supposed to be better than this, you fuckers.)
And this year, watching Trump and his supporters do everything in their power to fix the game in their favor and seemingly get away with it, the fear grows in me. Even though, again, I feel viscerally that there’s no way good people could vote for the guy who’s done everything Trump has — including forced hysterectomies for women detained by ICE, which is breathtakingly horrific and seemingly met by little more than a shrug by the majority of people — I have to remind myself of two things: there are those who think, somehow, that Joe Biden is worse, and that there are a lot of not-good people voting in this election.
The Biden thing is… whatever, really. He’s not my first choice, nor even my third or fourth. He’s old, he’s slow, he’s been complicit in some shitty things in the past. It’s hard to get excited about voting for him… but still; he is in no way as bad as, or worse than, Trump. It’s not even a contest.
That not-good people thing, though — that’s why I’m scared. I’d previously believed that the majority of Americans were, ultimately, decent people with some sense of morality, and after the last four years, I can’t say that with any sense of certainty any more. And that’s the fear, really. This time around, when it’s clear just who Trump is and what he wants to do, when there’s no shred of ignorance left after four years of his behavior, what if it just turns out there’s more bad people than good?