It's an odd phenomenon, one that I've watched over the course of my life. During a Presidential campaign, people become incredibly passionate about our government and politics.
They seem to become energized like never before, excited to install what is essentially a stranger to the highest office in the land. People pack out rallies, go door to door to garner support, and even wait in lines for hours to cast their ballot.
Some even donate large sums of money, just to support the guy!
Yet, whether their candidate wins or loses, something very peculiar happens. Once the new or reelected President takes his oath of office, things go back to normal. The rabid fanatics who- just a few months ago- were willing to go to blows for their candidate, seem to forget that he is now their president.
Even Obama, who was universally loved by many Americas, couldn't maintain that kind of enthusiasm after the elections.
It seems that the American people think their job is done once they vote for their man. A kind of blindness falls over the populace. They return to their daily lives and pay very little attention to what the President is up to.
How many people who voted for Obama can talk about what he accomplished as President- be it good or bad? They remember Election Night 2008 and the massive celebration, but they'd be hard-pressed to discuss his reforms, appointees, legislation, and diplomatic decisions.
Sure, they'll mention Obamacare, but I doubt they know how much Obama did in the making of the law.
When put to the test, even college students who are thankful for Obama can't even remember what he did as President.
This is not the President's fault, or even the media's. We have unprecedented access to our government, thanks to a 24-hour news cycle, social media accounts by government leaders, and extensive websites that detail the actions and movements of our President. But it seems the average person doesn't have the energy or inclination to keep tabs on our leaders.
This is a very bad thing. What good is an election if the people put into power have carte blanche in office? If we are not holding them accountable, then they can pass whatever laws they want without our knowledge or consent.
It is fear of not being reelected that holds our leadership in check. If they think their supporters will be angry over a decision, they will not make that decision. But if they know we are not paying attention, not only will they think they can get away with anything, but they won't know what their people actually care about.
Case in point: SOPA and PIPA. In 2012, our government was poised to give Internet Service Providers massive power to control the content we saw on the Internet. It would have meant the death of Net Neutrality, a vital key in protecting Freedom of Speech online.
These laws were so terrible, Wikipedia went black for a day and compelled Americans to call their congressman. The outpour of responses were so overwhelming, the laws were deemed toxic and died immediately.
It's proof that when the American people are alert and paying attention, we can continue to have a say in our legislative process.
But Wikipedia can't go black every day. We as citizens need to continue to stay focused and express our concerns over laws and decisions we don't support.
If there's any indication, the men and woman that elected Trump will do just that.
In an interview with CNN this morning, Kellyanne Conway described the grassroots resistance against Mitt Romney for Secretary of State as “breathtaking.”
Over the past several days, Romney has been a topic of focus for countless Donald Trump supporters online who have urged the President-elect and his transition team to look elsewhere to fill the SOS position using hashtags like #NeverRomney. (via Milo)
Romney was a strong opponent of Trump's during the election. He was outspoken in his opposition towards the GOP candidate. While Trump and he can bury the hatchet and move forward, the people who endured the ridicule and hate of #NeverTrumpers don't forget so easily.
Trump's supporters over the course of the election had to endure hate, abuse, and outright lies at the hands of the media, Democrats, Hollywood, and even notable Republicans. Despite all that, they persevered to get Trump elected President. Now that he is poised to create his administration, they refuse to let in any hypocrites.
Although politics don't often work that way, and Romney may be a great choice as SoS, Trump's supporters won't go down quietly. Their movement to resist Romney has come to the attention of Trump and his campaign manager Conway.
If they're discussing this, it means the movement is working.
I personally don't know if Romney will be a good secretary of state. Based on what I've seen from Donald Trump, he's not one to forget if someone opposed him. It's unlikely that he will appoint a man to such an important position, that was so ruthless in his opposition to his candidacy.
But Trump is also a smart leader. He literally wrote the book on making deals. It's possible he can see past Romney's comments and select him as SoS because he knows the man will do a great job in the position.
That's not the point, though. The people that supported Trump throughout this campaign are still by his side. They are watching the news like hawks, quick to express their opinions over issues like cabinet selections.
This might be an indication of the next four years. The people that defied the odds to support Trump as president won't "fall asleep" like voters normally do. They might very well watch this administration properly and will be quick to take action on issues that concern them.
Obama claimed his administration was the most transparent in history. We know that was false. An administration is transparent only when the American people are watching and speaking. The media will want to control the conversation, Trump's political opponents will want to control the conservation, even his administration will want to control the conversation.
But as long as the American citizens are speaking, online or otherwise, we will control the conversation.
After all, this is a nation by and for the people.