What the Different Responses to the 2020 Election Results Have Shown: America Is Too Polarized


Ding! A notification popped up on my phone. I put my pencil down and flipped it over. “Joe Biden has officially become the 44th president of the United States of America.” I read it again. And again. And again. Am I reading this correctly? I tap on the article only to realize that it was true. Joe Biden is the President-elect and Kamala Harris is the Vice President-elect! I run down the stairs practically tripping over them in my rush to tell family. Excitement emerged as the truth sunk in. I can’t believe we did it! America is finally in good hands. 

As in my home, it didn’t take long for the rest of the nation to respond. While I had responded positively, others did not take the news so well. Individuals wearing MAGA merchandise were throwing bottles, chanting “Trump 2020” and shouting for a recount. Such negative responses flooded news sources. Individuals who, at the beginning of the election, said the votes were secure have now begun to question the legitimacy of the results (since the party they voted for did not win). There were dramatically different responses; however, one thing has become certain: America is too divided. 

From early voting and mail-in ballot complications to the prolonged result, there have been two main responses in the world to the presidential election results: those who support the results and those who are in support of a recount. I feel as though We, the nation, should support the results of the election. As a high school student, the stress of the presidential election has weaved its way into school and my home. Whether it be in the hallways or in classrooms, school activities or during breaks, the election was a prominent topic that students and even teachers could not stop talking about. Instead of voting for one side or party out of spite for the other, we should choose a candidate that will do what is best for the country. As Rachel Kleinfeld and Aaron Sobel, opinion contributors to USA today news, have stated: “The polarization we face today isn’t just about believing the other side is wrong. Partisans opposition party members as malevolent, immoral forces,” (USA Today). Whether or not you agree with the results, we must recognize that Joe Biden is the 46th president of the United States of America. At this point, it has little to do with political ideologies and a lot more to do with acceptance: understanding that Trump lost and moving on.

A majority of Biden-supporters have come to accept the election result and their reactions have been very positive: “Spontaneous celebration erupted around the nation, even amid its worst pandemic in a century” (LA Times). The same people who were tear-gassed in Washington while Trump held a Bible in front of a church were now chanting with joy. At 4:03 P.M., Chicago Mayor Lightfoot said, “Make no mistake—America is back” (Chicago Tribune), demonstrating excitement for the election results. Many felt like they could express themselves. With Kamala Harris in power, lots of people felt safe. For example, Renne Wilson, an active Biden supporter, said that “Kamala has given me the courage to stand for what’s right. You might go through some obstacles but you will get there” (Sky News). They felt as if their lives mattered and that woman of color in power is what America needs. In the response to the election results, the phrase “Making America Great Again” has started to be used in a different way: Some Biden supporters said that with his election, we will eventually heal to become great again, referring to Trump’s presidency as a period of time that held back America. It is ironic that Trump’s campaign slogan is now what America hopes to achieve after his disappointing presidency. While celebrations emerged in response to the election results, many Trump-supporters objected the outcome and challenged the validity of the election process. 

Protests emerged as angry Trump-supporters realized that he was not re-elected. In Leslie Brinkley’s “2020 Election: Solano Co. Trump supporters react to election results”, she discussed how some Trump supporters received backlash for their views. They should not be discriminated against because of their beliefs. While politics has divided our nation through ways like protests, 

we can’t lose sight of our common goal. During this presidential election cycle, an unprecedented disinformation campaign has resulted in large-scale rejection of the democratic process, including the certification of the voting results. Acceptance is crucial in stitching up our divided country and the only way we will be able to do so is if we do our part. 

As a student, a woman, and an American, I believe that Biden should be president. I do know that anyone in power should not refer to women as ‘pigs’ or make racist comments about people of color or believe in white supremacy. I do believe our country is too divided. Too much polarization has led to this condition in America—condition in which we cannot even accept the president, a condition in which individuals are acting as sore-losers towards their own fellow-citizens. People can have different views, but we have allowed these differences to separate us. We must stand united, not divided, if we want America to progress as a nation.