The hyperemotional post-election political fallout has included more jabs, slams and name-calling than the average pro wrestling match.
The difference is, the result of the presidential election was real — not fake. Like it or not, Donald Trump is the 45th president of the United States.
Protests, most notably the massive turnout Saturday in Washington, D.C. highlighting women’s rights and concerns, have dominated the news. That, as well as heated public discussions, have launched sharp barbs that some fear may cause even more divisions between the two sides.
There have been reports that protests in Portland and a few other locations turned violent, with property damage and a few claims of people being assaulted.
Some Somervell County residents this week were asked for their thoughts on the clashes, and responded with a wide variety of opinions.
None — that we know of — were fake.
Glen Rose resident Sarah Dye, a teacher and nurse at Brazos River Charter School, said she views the situation — particularly in regard to the issue of fact-checking, “alternative” facts, and outright fake news — as interesting. She said she believes people need to research key issues on their own.
“I try to read things and understand things with an open mind, and try to check my facts,” said Dye, whose son, Joshua Whitfield, is a Dallas pastor who has written guest columns for the Dallas Morning News. “A lot of people need to learn and understand what they support, and what they’re backing up.”
Dye said she doesn’t usually get in the middle of political arguments.
“I don’t respond. I’m not one to stir the stink,” she said. “I just listen and try to understand.”
Kelly Shackelford, Glen Rose High School principal, said he felt like the election itself settled the arguments.
“My feeling is that’s why we had the election,” he said. “(Trump) had the most votes.”
Kenneth Shadowens, a Somervell County resident for 38 years and owner of Tiger Storage, said, “I’d have to say we’re definitely in for a change. I don’t know if it’s for good or bad.”
As for the protests, Shadowens said he thinks it’s “probably normal stuff,” and happens “because we allow it to go on.”
Buster Willey, who has lived in Glen Rose 56 years, encouraged a wait-and-see attitude toward how Trump’s presidency plays out.
“People should let it go and see what he can get done,” Willey said.
Angel Gauna of Glen Rose, whose profession is in the medical field, also sounded optimistic.
“I think he could do some good, such as with Obamacare — our medical (insurance),” Gauna said. “I’ll give him a chance.”
Asked whether others will eventually take on that attitude, Gauna said, “I hope so.”
Glen Rose resident Sharon Riggs, a teacher at Glen Rose Junior High School, said that the issue of “alternative facts” disturbs her, but she wants this to become a successful presidency.
“I can understand the fear and anger from different groups,” Riggs said. “I think the new administration is having difficulty defining itself, and having difficulty in explaining itself. As an example, alternative facts.
“There are a lot of unknowns, (such as) what their plans are and what might happen. I am concerned because I want the new administration to be successful, because I truly think if (Trump) is not successful, then we as a nation are not successful.”