I, like may others, will never forget where I was when Donald Trump reached and surpassed 270 electoral votes. As I watched the numbers roll out, all I was thinking was: How is this happening?

Everyone had projected Hillary Clinton to win. Even anchors on Fox News, days before the election, said that they could not see a way for Donald Trump to win. However, on Nov. 8, Trump proved everyone wrong.

Months before the election I was completely invested in politics. During the summer I was on my computer doing research, I was watching CNN almost every day, and I did not miss a moment from both the Republican and Democratic national conventions. I was getting amped up and could not wait until the debates started. It was exciting knowing that we could possibly elect the first female president of the United States.

Donald Trump wasn’t given much of a chance against Hillary Clinton, which made the result all the harder to swallow.

Wikimedia Commons

I  am the president of the Students for Democracy club at my school. It is a club where we try to get as many people and students registered to vote as possible. Since this was an election year, I thought it would be wise to have students partake in “We Vote Hawaii.” This allowed students to cast their votes for president and all the way to the City Council.

My fellow club members were all excited for the election, but when the day finally came, I think they all shared a different emotion. I myself was nervous and anxious. I had no idea that later on in the night I would be feeling so much pain.

As I sat on the couch watching the results, many emotions ran through my mind. I was angry, sad, disappointed and confused. I could not even start to believe what was actually happening.

“He’s going to get his presidential picture. He’s going to go down in history as an actual president,” I told my dad. My mind was lost and I started to lose every ounce of hope as more and more states leaned in Trump’s favor.

Before the night ended, I shut off the TV with brutal disappointment. My parents called my sister and I into their room. We talked for about an hour about how we were all hurting and confused and very emotional. My father and mother both explained how they had the same feelings before, when Ronald Reagan and both George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush were elected.

For my mother, the 2000 election with Bush and Gore was very painful. My parents went on to explain how things will be okay. I understood that a Trump presidency would not affect me directly at this moment.

However,  I began to think about all the other people who needed this election to finally get some equality and some fairness. Minorities are not just based on skin color, they are also based on income and beliefs. And because of the election outcome, I fear for violence against minorities in this country. As sad and as angry as I was, I had to think about the many other people that would be negatively impacted because of the election results.

No, I will not call Donald Trump “president.” He is not and never will be my president. My president is someone who can represent all people of our country; not just the wealthiest, not just men and not just Caucasians. I wanted a president that understood the economy and middle class. I wanted a president that actually knew about foreign policy and terrorism. I wanted a president that believes in science and knew that climate change is a real danger.

But sadly, she lost. I have said this many times and I keep repeating it, it is not so much that she lost that makes me so upset, it is that he won. This man who has said and done so many horrific things. An actual presidential candidate bragged about sexual assault (take a moment to say that last line a few more times). Yes, he can make a significant impact on the Supreme Court, our military and our foreign policy. It is frightening to know what he and his administration are capable of, especially since they have the backing of the Senate and House of Representatives.

As I sit here watching the administration that he is putting together, I question everything. I know that many political leaders, including President Obama, have said “If he is successful, we will be successful.” However, I must disagree. If he is successful with repealing the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare), 11 million people lose. If he is successful with building a wall along the southern border, minorities lose. His wins means losses for so many Americans as well as other countries.

However, with all of the emotions that I have felt, it does not make me want to stop being politically engaged. In fact, it fuels me. I want to continue learning and gaining knew insights in the political world. My goal is to eventually have a job at CNN as a political commentator.

I have many more things to say about my whole political journey, experiences and about this election. I cannot have a direct impact on where our country goes from here on at this point in my life. Right now as a high school student, the best thing I can do is to keep being politically active and continue to urge my fellow classmates to vote in the future.

After all, we could have a major impact on the 2018 congressional election and in the 2020 presidential election. I myself promised to be even more invested in future campaigns. I do not see this as a complete disappointment. I see this as a wake-up call to make sure that I and many others become even more politically active.

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