I moved to Toronto from the United States when I was only seven. Thus, being born in New York has become a fun fact rather than a life experience. New acquaintances are always intrigued, waiting to hear more about what my childhood was like in the streets of the city that never sleeps. However, the memories are scarce and the stories are blurry. For over a decade now, I’ve identified as a Canadian — American merely by passport. Home is where the Raptors are. Home is where the poutine is. Home is where Drake- sometimes- lives. The only time my identity changes is during the Summer Olympics. Because let’s face it, y’all are more into hockey, eh?
Over the past year, being American has never been more important. The entire world will be watching tonight as citizens decide the next President of the United States. The new leader of the free world. And given the fact that these same people are the ones that nominated Donald J. Trump as a presidential candidate to begin with — that’s a little frightening.
I did my civic duty and voted. I registered as an absentee voter, I received my ballot through email and I documented the whole process on Snapchat. The experience was rather anti-climatic, as everyone around me celebrated Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s first year anniversary in office – a man they can actually be proud of helping bring into power.
Given my choices, I was not satisfied by my vote. I would have liked to see someone who has the ability to change the political system. I would have liked to see someone who is going to have big answers to big problems instead of fighting over little issues. Or the wrong issues. I want big change.
So, I didn’t vote for Hilary Clinton. I just voted against Donald Trump. Clinton’s a liar and Trump’s a racist. Unfortunately, I voted for the lesser of the two evils. I voted based on the countless AJ+ videos and Buzzfeed articles I’ve seen on Facebook. I voted based on memes and tweets.
Because I am a millennial. I am a visible minority. And I am a woman. So I think it will make a lot of sense when I tell you that I am neither a Democrat nor a Republican. As a millennial, I was raised to value tolerance. As a Canadian, I grew up around diversity. As a woman, I strive for optimism and authenticity.
Sure, it’s empowering to see a woman running for office as a feminist. However, Hilary Clinton lacks the authenticity and transparency that is required for a presidential candidate. I don’t understand her views and she doesn’t understand mine. For one thing, I do not wish to be seen as a ‘front line’ on domestic terrorism solely based on my faith. I’m a little busy. You know, on Netflix and stuff. It’s a millennial thing. You won’t understand.
However, I will admit that my generation is far from perfect. As millennials, we’re going to need to stop taking everything so lightly. As a millennial, I’m terrified that young voters will vote for Trump because ‘it’s funny’. I, myself, voted for the senator with the ‘cooler name’ due to my lack of knowledge about their policies — or existence. And although that wouldn’t be the case if American politics wasn’t arguably the biggest joke of the decade to begin with, it’s still unsettling to think that we’re the generation that’s looking for change without seeking it. And that itself has to change.
So, if you’re American — go vote! Because silence is also a form of politics.
What are your thoughts on the election? Let us know in the comments below!