November 9th, 2016 will go down in history as one of the most unexpected days possible. Donald Trump, an outsider to politics and a highly debated person on many fronts, won the required votes to become the next President elect of the United States of America. Many forecasters had him at around 20-25% possibility to win the race.
He has angered many and his track record in life and business is in many ways questionable. Furthermore, anger and frustration towards the man has been further fueled by the stereotypes of his supporters and their actions shown in media. Candidates talk during the race in extremes to differentiate themselves from other opponents and this polarises the issues even further. Seeing as if there are only two extremes to choose from. The Donald triumphed in all this, despite his approach many despise – me included.
While I’m not a supporter of Trump and his ideology or values he promoted during his campaign – I’m long on democracy and the free will of the masses to decide what’s in their best interest.
Being long on democracy means you have to go through some downturns every now and then. Trumps’s era might just become one, or then it might not.
Many of the strong civilised institutions are built in such a way that a single era of any leader will (or at least should) never permanently change things in such a way that things are irreversible. This is why changes to the constitution in Finland require the majority vote of two separately elected Parliaments, for example.
The Republicans will control the Presidency, the House and the Senate in the US which also means they get to fill Anthony Scalia’s seat among the High Court Justices. This degree of control is extremely rare, but as we have seen – very much possible.
I was personally disgusted and appalled by the campaign Donald Trump ran – disrespecting many of the values that a civilised and multicultural society is built on. However, what brought me closer to understanding him – was his victory speech. It was something you have not seen from Trump before in his campaign.
After being awake for about 19 hours straight (I watched the results roll in on New York Times in disbelief at 4am and was unable to go back to sleep) – I have bounced back with my thoughts, just like the markets and exchanges in US and Europe. There is hope, no matter how ugly it might look. The Donald has no interest to ruin his international businesses with his Presidency.
Nothing great was ever built by complaining from the sidelines. This is also why I believe Europe will need to step up its game and take back its place in the world arena. Many questions remain unanswered, especially regarding foreign policy – given our geographical location in addition to not being a Nato member.
Despite all this – I still believe in free will, democracy and humanity. On days like this, it does not look like we are progressing, but change is always an opportunity for everyone