Donald Trump does not want to be president, for Donald Trump does not want a job that is difficult and extraordinarily tedious. What Donald Trump wants is to humble Barack Obama, the Bush family, the Clintons, and every individual he believes has wronged him. Donald Trump also wants money, attention, and respect—as do many people, to be fair.
He can get all of those things by relinquishing the presidency—and would not have to work for any of it. He can only get money by being president. And he will have to toil and suffer for every penny of it. His life would become a nightmare of protests, public humiliations, heckling, and constant media scrutiny. No more extramarital affairs, no more extended vacations and complete freedom of movement. For once in his life, Donald Trump would have to answer to someone—the American people. And for all the galas and television cameras, for all the pomp and circumstance, the truth is that being president is an excruciating job physically, mentally, and emotionally—much of it done quietly, sans fanfare, while sitting in an office. The greatest presidents have been those with a drive to serve and make America better. The worst have done it for prestige, money, or the obligation of nepotism. And America has suffered greatly for the latter.
A petition has been created begging the assigned Electors of the Electoral College to buck the trends of their particular states and vote for the candidate who won the popular vote. A lovely idea, but it is one that will never come to fruition because rich white men would never place the health of the country over the continued strength of white supremacy and racism.
And the truth is that America overall is in danger. For Trump is considering a collection of the most corrupt and incompetent people to ever venture into politics to serve in his cabinet. A man who cared about America would assemble a team of capable conservatives with a host of successes found within their resumes. Christie, Jindal, Carson, Palin and others are colossal political failures held in disdain. They are unfit to serve and would cause untold damage.
Unless Donald Trump does not become president. And should he have the presidency stolen from him by rogue Electors, his life would improve considerably—all while maintaining his status as a “winner.” The focused disgust that over half of the country has expressed towards him would vanish in relief the moment Clinton became president. Clinton would likely be so grateful that Trump would be able to operate for the next four to eight years with a blanket pardon in his back pocket. He would attend any Clinton event he wished as an honored guest. Some would be held at his hotels. Not only would he be amongst respected celebrities and the political élite, but for once they would legitimately be delighted to see him. Because he was willing to play nice when it counted the most. I’d rather be seen as an incorrigible but talented entrepreneur seated next to Beyoncé than be a harried and despised president of a faltering country who could only get Scott Baio and Rudy Giuliani to come to my events. I suspect Trump would rather have fame and mainstream adoration instead of the hate and fear of a majority of the populace too. His entire career has been the selling of his name. His presidency would ensure a four-year boycott of Trump products by more than half of the populace—more importantly, by the élite.
A Clinton presidency would be the magic wand that erased Trump’s misdeeds, but what of the overwhelming number of racists—some of them violent—who voted for him? Well, they would be an absolute treasure trove for Trump and others to exploit. Trump TV would decimate FOX News. Clinton would grimace as Trump used his preferential treatment to savage her in the press, but she’d bear it. For she knows how to play the game too. Trump would make untold sums from his media investments. Cable news is far more lucrative when conservatives are the underdog. And he would barely have to lift a finger. Money without having to work for it? That’s of more interest to Trump than slogging through a president’s daily itinerary.
Clinton winning by an Electoral College upset would benefit Trump and Clinton (and benefit America overall), but it would be a bittersweet victory even though I want desperately for it to happen. For I know that as a black woman my safety would be in danger. Gun sales would skyrocket. And though there are a plethora of assaults occurring now, I am certain that Trump’s white supremacist supporters would resort to murder during a Clinton presidency. I could be murdered.
I could be murdered, but I would take that risk to salvage our educational system. I could be murdered, but I would take that risk to keep Muslims and Latinos from being deported. I could be murdered, but I would take that risk were Native sovereignty validated and the health of our environment preserved. I could be murdered, but I would take that risk to keep LGBT marriages and adoptions intact. I could be murdered, but I would take that risk so that young women could maintain reproductive freedom. I could be murdered, but I would take that risk so the lower and middle classes had safe working conditions and health insurance. I could be murdered, but I would risk it all again and again and again, first and foremost, to stop black disenfranchisement and death.
Yet we will have a Trump presidency on December 18, and the demise of American excellence soon after, because white Americans want to once again feel as though they are inherently better than people of color and be able to point to a racist white president to validate it. They have proven it with their votes and the Electors will prove it with theirs. For through all of the country’s economic ups and downs that is what made America great to them. They will give up their money. They will give up their health. They will give up their safety. They will give up their privacy. They will give up the lives of the marginalized. All so that they can sit smugly no matter their poverty, addictions, battered and broken bodies, stunted children, scarred uteri, ghost towns, poisoned water or crumbling roads, and delight in the fact that they are not a nigger.