Stylist’s head of publishing operations, Jamie Klingler, has dual American-British citizenship. Devastated by Donald Trump's election win and in disbelief at her mother country’s decision, she says the result is a blow to women everywhere.
Back in February, I wrote that I was scared that Donald Trump was on his way to becoming the presidential candidate. Scared and ashamed of my country.
I am sad to say now that I’m still ashamed. Ashamed of the underbelly of racism, sexism and intolerance that this election result has exposed.
I honestly expected to spend the night in jubilation. As result after result rolled in, I kept waiting for it to turn. I was still hopeful that it wouldn’t end up being the nightmare it seemed. Instead, my night finished with a stream of messages of condolence on my phone, messages asking me, ‘Is this real? How are you holding up? I’m so sorry’.
When Pennsylvania went to Trump, I knew it was over. I come from Philadelphia. Tens of thousands of people had come out there for one of Clinton’s last rallies the night before. I thought I came from somewhere where it’s not OK to say and do the things Trump says and does, where it’s not OK to treat women the way he does, where it’s not OK to think his brand of hate is acceptable. Now I don’t know who I’m most scared for.
Trump’s win is a rejection of women. I have three adopted Chinese sisters, and his win is a rejection of them. His win puts us all back in our boxes, tells us that no matter how successful we are, we’re to know our place. You can be Secretary of State, you can be a senator, you can spend years serving the people and still lose to a narcissistic, unqualified demagogue lacking in substance and absolutely unfit for office. It’s one thing to lose to a worthy opponent, and another to lose to the devil.
I am appalled and angry at my country for electing him. This man does not represent me. How can he possibly represent me? I reject everything he stands for and it’s so much worse than when I rejected Bush or other candidates because he’s broken all the rules with his hate. It’s a violent hate and it’s abhorrent and terrifying. He only cares about himself and now he’s won his trophy.
The man who said he’d build a wall. Who said he could grab women by the pussy. He’s said and done so many unacceptable things that I can only think this is a backlash against feminism and equality and acceptance. Obama was too good. The women’s movement was getting too much traction. This underbelly of facism, racism and sexism is surging up and it feels like we’re facing World War III. The KKK endorses Trump and he just went and won.
Clinton worked so hard and did so much for my country. She’s spent the majority of her life serving the people, doing so much for children and healthcare, the Clinton Foundation – she’s done some amazing things. Yet Trump managed to project his lies, managed to shoot her down with tales of Crooked Clinton. Trump’s win tells young girls to get back in their box, to shut up and don’t be heard or you’ll be crucified like she was.
Where did it go wrong? Perhaps she wasn’t warm enough, feminine enough. Perhaps it’s as simple as the fact she has a vagina. Her popularity ratings were huge when she wasn’t running for office. She was respected when she wasn’t ambitious. Damn her for wanting the presidency.
I have dual nationality and in February, I said I’d seriously consider rescinding my American passport if Trump won. I’m so angry that I’m finding it hard to even acknowledge my citizenship right now. I’m livid. And it makes me think, ‘Why should I pay taxes to a country with a leader who doesn’t pay his?’ We’re in the middle of a crisis. I’m in shock and I’m devastated, and I am ashamed to be American.
I’ve been in the UK for 14 years, and my accent is my accent: people will ask me, like they did a few months ago, how I feel. And all I can say is I’m disgusted with America too.