The elephant in the room, to the modern rise in discriminatory gun violence, is the current president. Trump has countlessly incited violence in his speeches before his presidency and during. Our government is the problem, enacting strict political rules that interfere with our nation’s ability to voice their opinions on issues that need changing. The rise in discriminatory gun violence against peoples of color, and religious denominations is just the beginning of the worst to come. Specifically, rise in authoritarian rule is precedent in Trump’s actions in contemporary political affairs. Our goal as citizens is vigilance and activism in this emotionally helpless time.
The pressing contemporary issue is the rise in gun violence across our nation. Of course, people were always buying guns and contributing to the franchise, but my curiosity stems from the discriminatory drive to commit the plethora of gun violence we see in the media. Specifically, the Tree of Life synagogue massacre that occurred on the 27thof October this year, black lives dying everyday due to police brutality, and the various school shootings. The acts of violence are centered on certain communities that, opposing groups claim, oppress white power. Our role as citizens is to the ask the questions that persist to be deterred by apathetic minds. Inquisitive individuals search through political roles, past and present, to find acts of repetition in history.
Class knowledge has taught me how discriminatory acts of violence were apparent in the coming age of Civil Rights. The Ku Klux Klan (KKK) was, and is, a violent Christian organization designed to purge the nation of peoples of color: immigrants, African Americans, natives. Our leaders during that time of strife alienated African Americans progress during reconstruction through Jim Crow laws (Civil). The marginalization of African Americans’ differences enacted the fire that sought the KKK’s ideas to forcibly enact the rules (Civil).
Comparably, the same is seen for immigrants and Transgender individuals. Specifically, for the immigrant community Trump has overtly incited violence against the group by proposing laws to build a wall for separation, while enforcing the end to DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) (Anderson). The policy Trump has administered is separating parents from their children. Enacting an oligarchy where the children are left unaccounted for; insinuating an impressionable atmosphere of the children being separated. Transgender individuals are experience the same discrimination through lawful action. The fourteenth amendment to the constitution provides equal rights for all; however, our binary view of gender excludes a class for Transgender people who do not fit into the binary of male or female. Specifically, states have enacted certain laws that prohibit transgender individuals from:employment, housing, and public accommodations like restaurants, hospitals, and retail stores (Transgender). Similar to the laws of Jim Crow, that were enacted not long ago, Maine’s law covers those categories plus access to credit and education (Transgender). The blatant discrimination is eye opening for those willing to see. Trump as a president has incited discriminatory violence in every speech delivered.
Trump’s rallies are a sight for those who have not attended. He ostracizes activists who are opposing his political beliefs about the wall and the DACA bill repeal. Most can find a compilation of videos that assert this ostracized behavior through violence from other members at the rallies. Specifically, Trump incites this violence by instructing the patrons at the rallies to throw them out. Often, insinuating historical behavior of what Police officers would do to African American citizens to enforce the Jim Crow laws when the citizens “rebelled”. For example: tear gas, pushing, shoving, pepper spray and explicitly hitting those that refute his beliefs. The issue with this violent behavior remains that citizens should have the right to voice their opinions under the constitutional right of free speech. Trump, acting as leader in these attacks against these activists leaves them helpless and alone in the fight for justice. The power our current president has should not be used in a manner of coercion through capitalistic methods. The violence at these rallies proposes an acceptance for violence elsewhere. Hence, the pressing contemporary issue of discriminatory gun violence.
It is our job as citizens of this nation to be vigilant about these issues, while advocating for our voices to be heard. Change does not come on its own. A village of many can make the world move if need be. My fear, as should be the fear of many, is our governmental democracy will concave. The rise in authoritarian rule is pressing in the rallies that Trump asserts his dominance with violence. The issue remains and needs to be changed for a cohabitating nation.
Ashlyn Brown is currently a student at Old Dominion University. Pursuing a double major in Psychology and Women’s Studies. She is striving for peace with remembrance throughout her various entries. In her free time, she enjoys reading and reality television. She hopes to grow in her understanding, throughout the class, of the various mass annihilations of diverse groups of people. She hopes to explore through: cultural, socio-economical, and psychological lenses. With her growth she intends to help others, while carrying the information, informing the public of unbeknownst injustices.
Key Words: Trump, Contemporary, Issue, Authoritarian, Immigrants
Anderson, Stuart. “Here’s What To Expect On Immigration In 2018.” Forbes, Forbes Magazine, 2 Jan. 2018, www.forbes.com/sites/stuartanderson/2018/01/02/heres-what-to-expect-on-immigration-in-2018/#474b02c74cf2.
“Civil Rights Movement.” History.com, A&E Television Networks, www.history.com/topics/black-history/civil-rights-movement.
“Transgender People and the Law.” American Civil Liberties Union, Aclu, www.aclu.org/know-your-rights/transgender-people-and-law.