The world is in the middle of a hurricane right now. A torrent of viciousness has been unleashed. Great damage is being done. Severe pain is being felt. The carnage is not yet over – not by a long shot – but I have decided to stay optimistic. I might not be right, but I remain optimistic all the same.
Here are twenty reasons for staying hopeful.
- Because nothing lasts forever. Not even 70 year old orange haired monsters.
- Because for every action there is a reaction, and the stronger the action, the more forceful that reaction is likely to be.
- Because good people exist. In their millions and millions and millions.
- Because he will be unable to sustain his momentum. Sooner or later, even the strongest efforts run out of steam. That momentum, once lost, may rebound against him. Powerfully.
- Because career criminals and sociopaths can’t help stabbing their allies in the back, given half a chance. It’s in their nature.
- Because he is no Putin. It took Putin years to take total control of the Russian state apparatus. He doesn’t think long term and he can’t wait that long.
- Because America is not Russia. It has known two hundred and forty years of democracy and constitutional law. Such freedoms are not surrendered easily.
- Because too much piling on of straw in too short a time tends to break the backs of even the most patient camels.
- Because he has no real friends. None at all. Will his ‘allies’ be there for him should things turn against him? Don’t bet on it.
- Because he is not as popular with the public as he thinks he is. His enemies grow by the day. His supporters? Look at the inaugural crowds.
- Because most things fail, and the bigger, the more complex the changes, the more likely they are to end in chaos.
- Because he has offended and insulted strong people who have spent decades fighting for recognition and parity. Let him try roll back the progress they have sacrificed their lives for. Let him try.
- Because events, dear boy. How he handles the many crises to come will dictate so much.
- Because of women, immigrants, blacks, Latinos, gays, Muslims, Jews, thinkers, educators, liberals, professionals, students, scientists, feminists, environmentalists and all those who strive for fairness and equality. This is their America too, yet he has decided to wage war on all of them at once.
- Because the millions of people he has made enemies of have collectively deep pockets. They can damage all those who support him, simply by deciding judiciously where to spend their money.
- Because music, art, comedy, satire and independent journalism will continue to speak the truth and erode his authority, despite anything he tries to do.
- Because when the going gets tough, the tough get creative.
- Because this is not a revolution. It’s a cynical counter-revolution, instigated by elderly and middle-aged men on the young. If you are looking for energy, longevity and staying power, you will not find it in the ranks of the victors.
- Because it’s one thing to give out about ideas, but when real people – friends, colleagues and neighbours – get hurt by him, allegiances will change too.
- Because of the shame he has inflicted on America. The deep shame so many now feel while he rules the roost. Land of the Free? Right now, those words ring very hollow. It’s not what freedom is about. It’s not what America is about.
Because of all this, and possibly more, I feel hopeful. The game is not over. It’s barely even started.