Trump’s victory is unexpected, but it’s proof that democracy is working

Craig Watkins, Crier Staff

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It’s over, and I know most of us want to put it behind us, but very few people seem ready to move on with the results of this electoral cycle. I thought people were sick of politicians and wanted to see an outsider break the system, but now that it has happened, nobody seems thrilled about it. If anything changes after this election, it should be the understanding of how much power the public has in choosing the president.

“Power,” you might wonder. “The electoral college has all of the power. If the popular vote decided the president, Clinton would have won.” Well yes, but the popular vote will always favor urban areas since that’s where the majority of the populace is. The Electoral College changes the weight of votes to determine which candidate had the greatest reach and that each voice is considered, not just the loudest. If Stephen Tyler and Marlee Matlin were talking to you at the same time, nobody is going to blame you for making more of an effort to listen to Matlin. Maybe that does make it a broken system, but there is reason behind it.

Now forget Election Day entirely. Think about how Donald Trump got to that point.

The Republican Party had 17 major candidates in the primary, many of whom were tested and popular politicians. Trump was an outsider and opposed by “the establishment” that many often claim decides which candidate gets onto the final ballot. It certainly was not friends in high places that got Trump the GOP ticket.

Another group usually accused of swinging elections that was proven innocent by Trump’s victory was the mainstream media. Not one major news network supported Trump through the entire election; at best, their motive was to influence people not to vote for Clinton. This includes Fox News, the right-leaning network that some liberals would argue is the only source conservatives get their news from (which is not a bad analysis of how few right-wing networks there are compared to left). With this in mind, we can see Trump did not work his way up by using the media either.

If I had to guess one outside factor that did help Donald Trump get votes, it was Clinton’s email scandal. That she got away with crimes that would land lower-position government workers in prison turned many voters against her and split the democrat vote. That being said, Trump’s countless scandals and controversial comments turned many Republicans against him. Both candidates had forces working against them.

The result of this election had to have been the least “rigged” one in my lifetime, because the only people left that could have gotten Trump into office were his millions of supporters in the general public. Americans always had complete control over this election, whether or not we felt like it. So regardless of your feelings towards the president-elect, be extremely proud of the fact that you even had the right to make your voice heard. As Conan O’Brien put it, “In America, we get to pick who’s going to ruin our country.”

The real point of all of this is that even though we have Donald Trump as our leader for the next four years, people need to see this and understand that with their powers combined they can put anyone they want into office. We are not limited to established politicians and voting does make a difference. Most importantly, if Americans can place an outsider in office with the power of anger and fear, I have full confidence that we can one day do the same with the power of harmony and compassion.