On the “Historic” Elections

The people I find most frustrating are those who claimed to have “called it all along” and really knew- not expected, knew- this was going to happen.

I followed soberly, and analytically. I observed with the notion that one really should not interfere in, or comment on, the choices of other peoples. But I broke down in a fit of something between hysterical laughter and a weeping meltdown when a staunch Sisi supporter jubilantly walked into my office this morning elated by the results. (right know, as I’m writing this, that very supporter is quarreling in the background with a crestfallen Canadian. The funny part is when the former emphatically shouted “this is democracy; the people have spoken!” Alanis Morisette should reprise the lyrics to Ironic).

Around midnight, one pundit who was a clear Clinton supporter, and I’m so disappointed I do not recall his name, said “we’re seeing this trend everywhere! In the Philippines, in Turkey, In Egypt!”. And I thought wow, we made it big, up there in the same list with the world’s superpower and other states run by megalomaniacs. Vlad’s throwing a Tea Party in Damascus and everyone’s invited.

I think a new dictionary entry for myopia should be “feeling happy that the dollar dropped against the pound after Trump’s election”. I’ve come across such people several times today.

I understand the reasoning behind most of the arguments explaining these results as a clash of dichotomies; black against white, urban against rural, insiders against outsiders, the media against the silent majority, pollsters and pundits against everyday Jo’s, self-righteous intellectuals against self-righteous churchgoers. But I just can’t wrap my head around a man-against-woman explanation. One redcheeked pundit, whose nose spent too much time trapped in books, called this a “gendered” election in which Trump represented “the very manifestation of toxic masculinity”, whereas Clinton was the “centre of the feminist rallying cry”. Really? Clinton was as much feminist as Obama was black. And as for Trump, well, that’s all casual locker-room chatter. On a related point, I will never forget the sight of the tallest drag-queen in the world holding up a “women for Trump” sign in the Hilton Ballroom last night.

News outlets here are hailing Sisi as the first foreign head of state to call up Trump and congratulate him. I didn’t know there was a race. What’s he expecting? An all-inclusive weekend at Mar-a-Lago? My favourite headline so far though must be the one which claims that one of Trump’s most import pronouncements was that he found “chemistry with Sisi,” whose advisers must be hooking him up now with talking points from Dirty Dancing and El-Kaif.

Eight years ago, before Clinton was edged over in the primaries, an American friend was belittling Obama’s chances telling me that “they don’t call it the White House because of the paint job.” His words stung at the time. He was probably stung even harder on election day 2008. Yesterday was payback for him and millions more of his ilk and temperament. But back then they must have thought it was the end of the world as they knew it. Today, many are feeling the same way. But the world goes on.

I leave you with President-elect Donald Trump’s sign-off tune.

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