I’ve adapted a well-known quote for this post because originally it said good ‘men’, and I wanted to acknowledge that women have agency too.
I was motivated to write this post after the election of Donald Trump as president.
I was not as stunned as the rest of the world. I was hardened by the tragic results of the European Union referendum here in the UK recently, which no one expected to turn out as they did.
I witnessed firsthand the chaos that is wreaked by our modern media machine, controlled behind the scenes by big business.
Its big seller is fear, by constantly feeding the masses doses of terror, recession, and violence.
Actually, we live in a more comfortable time than we ever have, at least in the UK, some parts of Europe and the US. That’s how we’re able to operate under such a sophisticated model of media and business.
One that controls the masses tightly by promoting a societal order that benefits very few.
Don’t think of politics as isolated
I normally stay out of political matters and approach them indirectly through advocating for women in tech on my blog, or helping others to develop themselves personally and professionally.
Politics isn’t a separate area of society, however. That’s just a media construction.
Political matters are inseparable from our daily lives, and legislation affects every one of us.
You can make a difference ‘politically’ by involving yourself in organisations that promote social good, which aim to change society at a macro level.
For example, women in tech isn’t just about women in tech.
It’s about the idea of equality and respect for everyone, regardless of who or where they were born.
If individual women are empowered to pursue their dream careers in tech, this will also help them become more powerful individuals in society at large. This will benefit the causes of women overall.
I chose the title of this blog post because so many of the reactions to Trump’s presidency were from good people, the vast majority of whom do nothing.
Acceptance rather than fear
I know we have no direct power to influence the American political system from our sofas in Britain. Still, I’ve noticed that the most politically active people on my social media feeds were also the ones that preached acceptance and tolerance – rather than fear, hatred and division.
Ironically, the descent into name-calling and despair is exactly the fuel that Trump’s – and Brexit’s – campaigns ran on.
If people are afraid of and hate each other, then overly-conservative and divisive campaigns (under the guise of patriotism) can flourish.
At the risk of being as dramatic as everyone else, much of Trump’s campaign – the little I allowed myself to actively absorb – reminds me of Nazi rhetoric.
A return to a lost golden age that never existed, a revival of the great American society (where’s it gone?) which is a mask for the true social injustices perpetuated by those in power. Uniting against a common ‘enemy’ (non-Americans).
And of course, Trump is the charismatic leader, galvanizing the people by selling them a dream, playing on their fears and tempting their greed.
Good people stand up
But more fear and more division is not the right way. So that’s why I was motivated to write this blog post.
All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for me to do nothing.
The opposite to Trump is not ‘not-Trump’ because that’s just Trump in a different form.
The true opposite to Trump and what he represents, the answer that everyone who was upset by the result of today’s elections is seeking, is more love, courage, openness and humanity, actively practiced by every human being.
That means every person needs to go out there and be more active in the causes that matter to them. That’s the antidote to Trumpism. Whether that’s helping inner city children learn to cook, or more women to succeed in tech, or get more homeless people off the streets, just participate.
Because it’s not like anyone was happy with the state of affairs before. The political climate could not have been called good.
We may now be reaching a point where it’s sufficiently bad that good people are motivated to speak.
It’s taken the election of a conservative government, the near-split of the United Kingdom, Brexit, the collapse of said government, the appointment of an unelected head of state, and, finally, the rise of Donald Trump, to get me onto the soapbox.
I hope this post reminds a few people that they aren’t alone. Lots of people who are normally silent are humane, compassionate and progressive. There’s always another election. There’s always time for change.
Catherine Heath is a freelance blogger and copywriter for B2B SaaS companies. She’s obsessed with the field of personality systems theory, and she also likes drawing, yoga, meditation and being in nature.