Letter to the Editor: Why we're protesting Trump

Dear Editor:

For a year and a half, Donald Trump used rhetoric that divided Americans among racial and religious lines. He scapegoated Mexicans for the problems working class Americans faced in other parts of the country. He stoked fear of Muslims and implied that he would consider setting up a database to track Muslims in the United States and would ban all of them "temporarily".

Then in his victory speech, Trump implored Americans to come together for the sake of unity. It is very clear he only wants unity when it's convenient for him, he wouldn't want to have to deal with protesters and would much rather deal with a passive American electorate. I find it insulting how he even asks for unity when he so clearly stoked fear and suspicion between different racial and religious groups within our country. 

This letter is in part a response to a letter from Mr. Jorge Montero in which he says Donald Trump won fair and square. I would contend that he didn't, considering he lost the popular vote by one million votes and only won because of a broken electoral college system. Also, Hillary Clinton did win Latinos overall in Florida and did win African Americans in Michigan, just not as great a margin as President Obama did four or eight years ago.

Mr. Montero also suggests that the protesters' parents saw "something of value" in voting for Trump but he does not elaborate on what that is exactly. Age doesn't bring wisdom by default. There are ignorant people of all ages, and smart people of all ages. However, I will venture to say that younger people have a greater grasp on what issues face America: money in politics, universal healthcare, free public college, and the threat of climate change. As I said in a previous letter, my generation will have to face the consequences of the next president for decades to come. 

Let me say this in no uncertain terms: Donald Trump has no mandate whatsoever. He lost the popular by a million votes (and counting), he is the most unpopular presidential candidate in modern American history, his ideas are unpopular, and is already backtracking on a number of promises he made during his campaign. People have good reason to want to protest Trump, not just because of his bigotry, but his horrible policies on climate change and taxation.

I participated in a protest on my college campus and I found that most of the protesters there disliked Mr. Trump because of his policies. I understand that most adults think college students are obsessive over Trump's racism, but that is not entirely true. Donald Trump would eliminate the EPA and cut Wall Street regulation,"rip up" the Paris climate accords and place more emphasis on dirty energy, kill the families of terrorists and "steal Iraqi oil", eliminate the FDA, implement "stop-and-frisk" (which has already been proven to encourage racial profiling), cut taxes on the wealthy to the point where it endangers the economy, cut funding for education through gutting the Department of Education, and deport 11 million undocumented immigrants through a deportation force rather than give them a pathway to citizenship.

This is why we protest. Most of the country doesn't agree with the aforementioned policies, and it seems like the younger generations will bear the brunt of these policies. As seen with the campaign of Bernie Sanders, most young people want a universal healthcare system and a free college plan so we can catch up to the rest of the Western world. Trump has almost promised the exact opposite of these changes and has done nothing to compel us to join his side. 

So the question everyone should ask themselves is why shouldn't we protest?

Edward Valencia
Downey