UB’s reaction to the unexpected election results
By Zachary Nelson
“I stayed up till 3:30.” That was the case for a lot of students at UB the morning after the election. I have noticed that students here have a lot of heart and a lot of passion for political matters and how the proceedings might affect themselves and those they love. I spent some of Wednesday morning asking people on campus what they thought and felt about the election results. So, instead of telling you my opinion, I will give you their thoughts.
At UB, the conversation began with non-verbals. One professor observed, “There was definitely kind of a dark vibe – there was definitely a lot of tension.” One of my classmates recalled, “Five o clock in the morning and I checked my phone and I felt sick to my stomach.” It seemed that a cloud of despair had descended on Mount Royal and Charles.
Then people started speaking up. Their first reaction was one of surprise. Phrases like, “It was mind boggling,” “I am just surprised in the outcome,” and “I was just completely shell shocked” were commonly used. One student ruminated, “I am surprised on how misrepresented the youth are… I think that the way things are going is controlled a lot by the way they view the world and since they were under represented – I feel like we had a loss.” One professor explained, “My first thought was surprise but as I reflected on it I realized that I probably shouldn’t have been that surprised and then I kind of reflected a little bit on how we kind of isolate ourselves and surround ourselves with similar belief systems. I don’t personally know anyone who is going to vote for Trump, therefore is discounted the power of what he [President- Elect Trump] was bringing to people.”
The conversation turned to concerns for the future. A student explained, “At first I was worried, and now I’m a little afraid. I always considered myself a proud American… and now I am kind of embarrassed… He is not predictable… I don’t know what he’s going to do”. Things like are my friends marriages going to become invalid are people going to lose access to healthcare. Or a supreme court justice who gets it in their heart to overturn Roe v Wade.
When people say they’re scared for their life because Trump now has the nuclear codes… he has the mouth of an eight year old but I don’t think he has the mind of an eight year old. He’s not gonna go bombing people… I don’t think he’s going to cause any wars or anything like that just cause of his antics. I started with optimistic fear to like fearful optimism.
Amidst the gloomy dreariness which permeated Mount Vernon, there were a few sparks of hope. One student admitted, “This is really surprising… but since it’s happened already, I am eager to see what is going to happen next.” Another student said, “Maybe he can bring something different.” Another student says that we must, “Have more comfort in knowing that God is the person that makes the final decision.”
Many students stayed up until 3:30. Most students participated in the passionate discussions which inevitably sprung up in classrooms across campus. All students must come to grips with the election results and decide how they will respond. We will see what the future holds.