How Trump Is Making Millennials More Politically Active
It turns out I, along with more than half of the Americans who voted in this presidential election, were wrong.
Trump has, in fact, started to "make America great again." It just maybe isn't in the way he intended.
I recently spoke to someone whom I have known my entire life, yet have never before engaged in meaningful political conversation with.
He's the one who brought my attention to this outlandish revelation.
My brother and I share similar political views (go figure). We would both be considered liberals by most means, but centrists in a lot of our beliefs.
And that's part of the reason why we have gone through the majority of our lives as spectators of the political events that have occurred over the past 20 or so years.
But this year, for one reason or another, has changed us from passive supporters to active participants.
As my brother, a resident of the Midwest, passionately spoke of the current political atmosphere that has overtaken America and the rest of the world, he explained how he has changed.
It opened my eyes to an unexpected truth.
Since Trump's election, I have gone from a passive supporter of things I believe in to an active one. I have donated money, called my congressman, called my senator and signed petitions. I have made it a point to read actual legislation and executive orders, rather than rely on others to translate and summarize them for me. I have had difficult discussions with friends and family, and I hope to do more.
Coming from someone who has remained quietly neutral for most of his life, at first these confessions caught me off-guard.
But then, I found relief.
For after hearing my brother pour his heart out about his alternate approach to politics, I realized that I have, without thinking much of it, done the same.
I have made the phone calls, researched the legislation and executive orders and engaged in conversations with friends and family on both sides of the political spectrum. I have decidedly become an active participant and citizen of our country.
Of course, all of this has been in opposition to President Trump, and it is only meaningful if we commit to continuing our active participation even after he has left office.
But, it is a start.
"I am a better citizen than I ever was before," my brother declared.
And I can see it in not just him or myself, but in a significant number of our friends, family and neighbors.
I see it in the protestors who have walked in the streets in support of women's rights; in the massive donations that flooded Planned Parenthood and the ACLU; and in those who flocked to airports around the country, welcoming foreign arrivals.
It makes me proud to be an American.
Civil discourse is the cornerstone of democracy. An educated and active citizenry is needed to make America great.
President Trump, in a way, has done that. His rhetoric, views, policies and executive orders have made many of us more active, informed and passionate.
I hope we continue to stand with one another and fight the injustice.