SLYS statement in response to the election of Donald Trump

Almost a decade on from the global financial crisis, the recovery has yet to be felt by those in America’s deindustrialised communities. Liberalism has presided over decades of decline and social discomposition, and it is only against this backdrop that Donald Trump’s victory could be made possible.

Concerns about economic insecurity, denied a voice by the Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton, were exploited and weaponised by Trump in a vulgar campaign that sought to blame the “other”.

We stand in full solidarity with the minorities and under-represented groups targeted by a racist, xenophobic and misogynistic campaign.

What has been particularly concerning in the wake of the result is the conciliatory nature of the response from the international political community. A narrative of “respecting the office of the president” has been pushed by politicians of all hues, and is deeply dangerous. A call for unity with Trump is a call for complicity in the hateful rhetoric he espouses, and will embolden the likes of Marine Le Pen and Norbert Hofer in their campaigns, in France and Austria respectively, in the coming year.

President Trump will face stubborn opposition from his base, congress, and ultimately Wall Street, as he looks to realise the protectionist economic vision he has set out. As his base grows apathetic or angry, it is the responsibility of progressives to set out an alternative economic agenda that more constructively channels the political energy generated by Trump’s brand of right wing populism.

Scottish Labour Young Socialists will offer their full support to all movements engaged in the battle for a society that values equality and inclusivity.

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