Notes From the Intersection: The Election That Changed Us

Hate groups like the Ku Klux Klan and others active in the Bay Area have been emboldened by the events and statements of the last year.

Dear Readers,

At last, Election Day has come and gone. It was a historic campaign — between a woman who happens to be the most qualified person who ever ran for president and a man who has never held public office before. The pettiness and viciousness of the campaign has left many of us feeling exhausted and more cynical than ever.

Still, we cannot be exactly sure what the future has in store. Whatever happens, we must be on guard.

As I wrote in our Aug. 10 issue (“Hi Haters, We See You.”), hate groups like the Ku Klux Klan and others active in the Bay Area have been emboldened by many of the events and statements of the last year. Let’s take a look back at 15 of Donald Trump’s most vile remarks:

“They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.”

“If she gets to pick her judges, nothing you can do, folks. Although the Second Amendment people — maybe there is, I don’t know.”

“So if you see somebody getting ready to throw a tomato, knock the crap out of them, would you?”

“I don’t know anything about David Duke. OK? I don’t know anything about what you’re even talking about with White supremacy or White supremacists.”

“I’ve been treated very unfairly by this judge. Now, this judge is of Mexican heritage. I’m building a wall, OK?”

“In many respects, you know, they honor President Obama. He’s the founder of ISIS. He’s the founder of ISIS. He’s the founder. He founded ISIS.”

“And when you’re a star they let you do it. Grab them by the pussy. You can do anything.”

“Such a nasty woman.”

“He’s not a war hero. He’s a war hero because he was captured. I like people that weren’t captured.”

“Now, this poor guy, you ought to see this guy” (said while mocking a disabled reporter).

“When people call you brilliant, it’s always good, especially when the person heads up Russia.”

“I would bring back waterboarding, and I’d bring back a hell of a lot worse than waterboarding.”

“I moved on her like a bitch. But I couldn’t get there. And she was married. Then all of a sudden I see her, she’s now got the big phony tits and everything.”

“Look at those hands, are they small hands? And, he referred to my hands — ‘If they’re small, something else must be small.’ I guarantee you there’s no problem. I guarantee.”

“I could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody, and I wouldn’t lose any votes, OK? It’s, like, incredible.”

We should meditate on these words (and many others that have been said by the same person and by his supporters and defenders in the last few months) because they have changed our national discourse forever. Those words have paved the way for anything to be said — and done — in American politics.


Channing Joseph

“Notes From the Intersection” is a column by SF Weekly’s editor, who lives at the intersection of Black American, progressive voter, and many other identities.

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