Like the rest of the world, and possibly the universe, (hello little life forms out there) The American Presidential election got me worked up into a right tizzy. Who the you-know-what, in their right minds could foresee that result? But hey, each to his/her own. Maybe the next few years will bring about some good. Too positive? Perhaps. Anyway, on that fateful day, I sat at my desk at the office in my black and whites, staring feverishly at the screen hoping for a miracle. Actually, let me clarify that; it wasn’t really my desk; a colleague had allowed me to sit at his desk while I interned at the office for a month. The said colleague himself arrived a little while later, with a smug expression, and told me that if Trump were to win the election, he’d roll over the floor laughing at the sheer stupidity of it all. He didn’t actually do it, of course, but he danced a few sadistic jigs around the room. Personally I wasn’t particularly partial to either candidate, for reasons that I’d rather not post on this blog.
What really drove me nuts, and was the primary reason for this this super late rant, were the conversations I had with people subsequent to the results being declared. The first was with my dad, a staunch democrat who suddenly decided after watching Trump’s speech at a fundraiser organised by the Republican Hindu Coalition, that Trump was going to be the Messiah of all American Hindus, and voted red. ‘Trump likes Brahmins’, he told me. “This is good for you and your brother.” Shortly after, a friend of mine living in Akron called me to say that she and her family were thrilled that Trump had been declared winner, for pretty much the same reasons as I’ve mentioned above. Now, I’m all for respecting people’s opinions, if they have a RATIONAL explanation for them. This though was too much for my already weakened heart.
Firstly, I do NOT condone caste based favoritism. India with its huge diversity faces such an incredible amount of discrimination along these lines, and to hear statements like these from intelligent, educated individuals, let alone one’s own family is disheartening to say the least. I firmly believe that religion should not be the basis of one’s life choices. This doesn’t mean I’m not a believer, only that I would rather be inspired or guided by my faith, and not bound by it. Needless to say, my dad has gotten a few grumpy replies since then and anytime my friend brings up the elections I not so subtly change the topic.
To think that just a few years ago, I sat in the breakfast area of the Trump Hotel in Las Vegas feasting merrily on the fanciest all you can eat buffet I’d ever laid my eyes upon, completely oblivious to politics and the unforeseeable impending doom. Truly, life never ceases to amaze.