I Am Not The Enemy

Faye Snider,
circa 2013

Readers, I’m grateful for this blog, the freedom to write on this difficult subject. Since New Year’s, I’ve been pondering Trump’s New Year’s eve tweet, not quite believing that as president-elect, he wrote the following:

Happy New Year to all, including to my many enemies and those who have fought me and lost so badly they just don’t know what to do. Love!

The word “enemy” caught me. Does he believe I am one of his many enemies because I voted for Hillary? Are all Democrats, all who voted blue, his enemy?

The definition of “enemy,” according to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, is:

  • “one that is antagonistic to another; especially: one seeking to injure, overthrow, or confound an opponent.”
  • “something harmful or deadly”
  • “a military adversary, a hostile unit or force.”

At first, I brushed it off— the words of a non-thinking man, a man who uses Twitter as a megaphone, in the moment, tweeting out whatever is on his mind. When I looked closer, I noticed that Trump, in fact, used the word “and” to separate his “many enemies” from “those who fought me and lost so badly they just don’t know what to do.”

In reacting emotionally, I merged the words— enemy, fought, lost, and the final insult— “they just don’t know” ending with “LOVE.” Huh? LOVE?

Gratefully, I know to take a deep breath, slow down, pause, try to think it through. What was Trump thinking when he typed these words on New Year’s eve? In my opinion, he was not thinking. The man who will assume the executive office in just one week, lacks ‘executive function,’ the ability to regulate stimulus reactivity, to consider the effect of his words, to offer an appropriate response.

What I know is that I am NOT Trump’s enemy. I am, however, not his friend, either. I’m a citizen who voted for a woman I respected. I would like to respect Mr. Trump. But to do that, I need behavior that shows he is taking into account all those who did not vote for him. How do we get a man who is gleeful over rendering Democrats “helpless” to consider inclusion of the other and responsibility to all?

I watched the confirmation sessions with gratitude yesterday. Our country DOES have checks and balances. There are bold representatives and senators who are digging in, speaking out and doing the job of legislating best they can. Yesterday, I embraced a new heroine, a woman nearly my age, Diane Feldstein, the ranking Democrat on the Judiciary committee, who on the second day of the Jeff Sessions hearing, took a day off for pacemaker surgery.

She surprised her colleagues by returning to the hearing the very next day to pick up,  without fanfare, where she left off—holding Mr. Sessions accountable for his behavior and questioning his intentions.

I am grateful to realize that all of us who lost the election are not alone. We are a unit, a voting block of 65,844,954 men and women, who, by speaking out and opposing thoughtless measures, can bring reasonable solutions and civility to our national life.






11 thoughts on “I Am Not The Enemy

  1. Pat rogers

    Thank you Faye, once again for a thoughtful piece. I continue to struggle with how to not only think about this next chapter in our nations history,but what I might do to contribute in a positive way.
    Perhaps volunteering at planned parenthood .

    1. fayewriter Post author

      I have a sense that the more Trump tweets, the more people step up. Look what happened to John Lewis’s book sales and the increase in the protest marches. You have so many skills. Any organization that resonates would be fortunate to have you as a volunteer!

  2. Elizabeth Levinsky

    First of all, you look just like your mother in this photo! My prayers are with you that we will have civility during this administration. Today, Martin Luther King day, Lets pray his thoughts and actions will continue in our country. His, I had a dream speech say it all!

    1. fayewriter Post author

      Liza, First, thanks for the compliment. I can see the resemblance to my mother. Yes, Martin Luther King’s words ring true to this day. There are so many who continue to hold his words in their actions. Note: John Lewis. What a marvel of a man— steady and right to the point.

  3. Rosemary Booth

    I admire the persistence in this post, the writer’s concentration on ferreting out what exactly constitutes thoughtfulness (or its opposite), in terms of behavior. Interestingly, thoughtless words twittered by the president-elect lead her to a grateful conclusion: that over 65M others are “targets” too–and might be allies for resistance.

    1. fayewriter Post author

      Rosemary, yes, to realize how many of us are connected in this effort.The response to this post has been significantly high…testimony for which I am most grateful.

  4. fayewriter Post author

    Carol, thanks so much! I am delighted you want to share this blog with your friends. I see blogging as an opportunity to explore a topic of meaning and to put it out in the world. This particular subject has been poking at me for quite some time and Trump’s tweet helped me to focus it…. thanks for helping to move it along.

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