The Start of Biden Does Not Signify the End of Trump

As of January 20th, 2021, Donald Trump is out of the office and Joe Biden is now the President of the United States. After what seems like the longest and most treacherous four years of our lives, it’s easy, and reassuring, to assume that it’s all ‘over.’ In fact, American society is extremely quick to jump at getting rid of things -- it is culture to say ‘good riddance’ and move on. Many people seem to have this attitude about the current state of the government. When Biden was officially projected to be the next president of the U.S on November 7th, 2020, social media posts were flooded with captions and tweets along the lines of ‘it’s over!’ ‘We got rid of Trump!’ ‘no more Trump!’ ‘Trump is done now!’ However, every event that has happened after that day, and long before his defeat, has proven otherwise. The fact of the matter is that Trump himself is not the issue, he is simply the instigator, the leader. It is his followers, the terrorists who stormed the Capitol, the cult-mentality of his mob -- where the hate lies. Because while Trump may be gone, he still has his supporters, more loyal than ever, and they are not going anywhere. 

 

Trump’s presidency brought out a side of America that lived in fear under the progressive second term of Obama’s presidency. He unleashed his inner hatred for all the progressiveness occurring in America, making it his goal to move backward and ‘restore’ America to ‘what it once was.’ This brought out, for lack of a better word, the haters -- the conservatives who despised progressive change, the white supremacists who didn’t want to see black people occupying seats in the government, the Neo-Nazis who wanted to inflict violence upon Jews, the Islamphoboes who believed every Muslim was a terrorist, the pro-lifers who wanted total control over women’s bodies -- the list goes on. Hate crimes rose like never seen before. With Trump as President, these individuals felt comfortable ‘being themselves.’ As Trump made new hateful remarks and passed conservative policies with every passing day, whether it was calling Black people thugs, Muslims ‘radical,’ banning transgender folks from serving in the military, making promises of building a wall to keep ‘Mexican drug dealers’ out of America -- his army grew. Every action ever taken by Trump led to what we saw on January 6, 2021 -- the riot at the Capitol. Make no mistake, this was not an unplanned event. It was well-coordinated, with plans going as far as taking hostages and assassinating members of Congress. 

 

How did we get to this point -- where hundreds of white supremacists were able to storm one of the highest government buildings with little to no consequences? It was a buildup of the last four years of Trump’s presidency -- the constant lies, manipulation of news, denouncing facts as ‘fake news’, calling the media corrupt -- Trump was in control of his army with a cult mentality that made them listen and do anything he said and wanted. He was their leader, and his followers instigated the actions witnessed by the rest of America.  

 

While Biden’s presidency will bring a new face and administration to the White House, it will not change the fact that 74 million people voted for a man whose intent was to destroy democracy and throw the entirety of America back to ‘the good old days’ when women, people of color, and the LGBTQ+ community had no rights. This cannot be replaced by a new administration. The threat of white supremacy still exists and will continue to loom over Biden as he takes on his new role, especially considering that it is not just the American citizens who are followers of Trump, but also the very people who lead this country and make decisions on behalf of the people -- Senators like Ted Cruz and Josh Hawley, who were complicit in instigating the Capitol riots and empathizing with its terrorists as they made every attempt to throw out minority votes in key states and prevent the certification of a fair election, and Representatives like Marjorie Taylor Greene who claimed that the Parkland shooting of 2018 and the Sandy Hook shooting of 2012 were part of a larger conspiracy theory. 

person holding a sign that says Photo by Marco Allasio from Pexels

Restoring democracy and building a better America starts with making sure Cruz, Hawley, and any other Republican who spread lies about a rigged election is removed from office, and anyone like them never has the possibility of being elected by the American people. This starts with restoring the faith and belief of the American people in the news. Cruz, Hawley, and other Republicans who spread this lie were elected based on spreading fake news and denouncing accurate media and reporting. Their followers do not believe in facts, and that needs to change. Together, we need to refocus and understand that it is the media’s job to report factual, accurate, and unbiased information on current events. While there is partisanship in the media, it does not sway the accuracy of the information reported. We must get rid of false news outlets who edit videos and pictures as their evidence to spread lies of voter fraud and the democratic system. In addition to restoring faith and belief in the media, we then need to move on to science, systemic injustice, and the processes of the nation. 

 

These are simply a few beginner steps that must be taken to ensure the changed mindset of Trump’s army and to make sure people like him are never able to have an influence or hold over the American people. Because although Trump is now gone and his face will be forgotten, his supporters remain more loyal than ever with the belief that Biden was wrongfully elected as President of the United States. Trump may be gone from office, and he may even go to jail within the next few weeks, but to make sure his army dissolves, we must, as a nation, restore the citizen’s faith in the media and news reporting.