By Carl Umegboro
UNITED States of America is widely held in high esteem as a first-world nation, and therefore, a reference point to other nations particularly third world countries. Unfortunately, its citizens drifted after the recent presidential election. The paradigm shift was witnessed in the election won by the candidate of the Republican Party, Donald Trump, a billionaire businessman against the Democratic Party former Secretary of States and first lady, Hillary Clinton.
Since the declaration of Trump as the President-elect many protesters, among them Democratic supporters of Clinton have never ceased displaying various forms of violence across some states. Some openly vowed to resist the change. Remarkably, Clinton accepted the election results, congratulated and pledged to give Trump the necessary support to enable his administration deliver dividends of democracy to Americans. The protests, infact, against the choice of the majority in a free and fair election is grotesque and primeval.
Incidentally, the developing countries, including Nigeria are made to believe that Americans are civilized with cultured philosophies as exceptionally displayed by Clinton after the election. To call a spade, a spade, the violence which trailed Trump’s victory leaves much to be desired. Trump will certainly be sworn in as the 45th President come January 20, 2017 except a judicial order in that direction is invoked. The demonstrations and civil disturbances are uncalled for, and cannot be consistent with the fundamental right of freedom of expression. Over the years, a pivotal fact learnt from the American democracy is that majority will always have their way while the minority, their say. Hence, if the majority in exercise of electoral franchise chose Trump to lead, civility demands that the minority will give peace a chance instead of taking laws into their hands. If the grievances were centered on electoral malpractices, courtesy demands that grievances should be channeled to the appropriate quarters accordingly.
Possibly, Clinton supporters craved for Elder Orubabe’s political ideology which attempted to violently resist change during the last transition in Nigeria having perceived politics as a do-or-die affair. Perhaps, Clinton pro-group also miscalculated democracy as mechanism for taking right decisions. Regrettably, it got nothing to do with rightness or wrongness. It is about making choices. Democracy is simply a game of numbers. If the majority takes a wrong decision, it is binding on the polity. If the majority opts for the worst, as long as it is backed by majority votes, that’s the end of matter. Apart from the general elections, the system extends to the legislative deeds. The gay bill despite its immoral tendencies was passed as a law with presidential assent based on democratic principle. Same applies to other developed countries where human-animal marriage is legalized.
Both gaffes scaled through by means of majority votes. That’s the bad side of democracy against theocracy which is measured by piousness. Democracy is rarely synchronized with justifiability or reasonableness. Under democracy, the law approves persons of questionable characters into political positions as long as no court of competent jurisdiction has convicted them of criminal offences. This is impermissible under a theocratic system of government since morals and ethics play fundamental roles.
As it is, Trump’s government will be inaugurated unfailingly as fixed. His experience or inexperience can only be discussed during appraisals after inauguration. No amount of protests or violence can thwart his ascension to occupy the WhiteHouse after President Barack Obama as the four-year mandate providentially given to the Republican Party endorsed Trump as number-one citizen. Even if for any of the reasons provided in the American Constitution, Trumps fails to continue as US President, the Vice President Mike Pence automatically steps into his shoes while a new Vice President is looked for.
This therefore boldly certifies the Republican Party as the next ruling party in the US. Suffice to say that the finest option available to pro-Clinton is to exercise patience till 2021 when the tenure rounds off. The popular mandate of the Americans; be it positive or negative is already a done deal in favour of Trump. Like the Democrat’s defeated candidate, the only alternative available at this moment is for collective massive support for Trump towards a successful tenure. If not, America will be taken back beyond imagination from its glory. But God forbid.
Honestly, this is beyond Trump as a person but America as a nation. Above all, the position of the country in the next four years under Trump’s administration will determine its relevance in the global community. Thus, a clarion call on all Americans to bury the hatchet and support the government or be ready to face the music. Nonetheless, Trump won the election legally, Clinton won ethically. Thus, no victor; no vanquished.
Umegboro writes from Abuja.