Like millions of people around the world, the results of the 2016 United States presidential elections where Republican Donald Trump defeated Hillary Clinton came to me as a shock.
It’s not just because all scientific polls predicted that Clinton would win. It’s that I can’t believe that the American people will elect as president someone who draped his campaign in xenophobia, racism, Islamophobia, sexism, and bigotry – apart from not having any government experience at all.
In the past few weeks and months, I’ve increasingly focused on the American elections to distract myself from my worsening frustration about the state of Philippine politics under President Rody Duterte. I tried to just shrug off all the bad news prior to yesterday (extrajudicial killings, foreign policy blunders, etc.), but in the last 24 hours, I reached my lowest point.
I may not be an American voter, but I have spent countless hours reading and reading news related to the elections. Heck, I guess I’m more informed about the issues re the US presidential elections than most other American millenials.
I’ve closely followed her career since she lost the Iowa caucuses to Barack Obama back in January 2008. I cheered for her throughout the 2008 primary season, and I came to resent the fact that Obama’s delegate lead over her never budged despite her late victories. Over the years, she became one of my life heroes – alongside Myanmar’s Aung San Suu Kyi and the late Sen. Miriam Defensor Santiago.
To Mrs. Clinton:
Thank you for your lifetime of public service to the American people. You could have opted to just retire peacefully at the height of your popularity when you left the State Department, but you chose to offer your leadership one more time.
The highest and hardest glass ceiling may remain rock solid for now, but you can take comfort knowing that you have inspired me and countless other aspiring young leaders throughout the world.