How People Reacted and Reflected on the 2020 Election


Raheemat Alade, OwlFeed News Editor

After four days of anticipation and emotional stress, we finally know who the next president of the United States will be.

Everyone and their mothers were on edge during Election Day, or you could say Election Week. This election was the most emotional and impactful election the United States has ever had.

Days before the election, many people were already preparing for the worst. Streets all over cities like Washington D.C, New York, and Philadelphia were all barricading their stores and buildings just in case protests and havoc were to break open on the streets. 

Either through TikTok, Twitter, or Instagram, everyone expressed their concerns for the election. Tiktok influencer and Black Lives Matter activist, Sarah Lugor, took to Twitter on November 1, a few days before the election, to caution people on safety.

“If you’ve noticed your community has shown visible political unrest in the past weeks, stay EXTRA careful on the day of and days following the election,” she said. 

Many people agreed with her, saying that the worst would happen regardless of whether Biden or Trump won. An African-American student from Arizona even said that they were afraid to leave their house because they were scared that their safety was on the line.

“I live in Scottsdale, a predominantly white area where most of my neighbors are Trump supporters,” said the student, who wished to remain anonymous. “There have been times where I’ve been called racist slurs, and I even got my Biden-Harris sign ripped from my front yard. I hope nothing happens on election day that puts my family and I’s safety at risk.” 

We all tuned in on Tuesday evening, not even knowing what would happen. Everybody was so anxious and excited to know who won. AFHS senior Alicia Ochoa said that the night was definitely unexpected and that she was so ready to know who won by Tuesday night.

Photo Credit: The Associated Press

“I thought we would know who won by the end of the night, but thanks to the swing states, especially freaking Nevada, god we didn’t get to know who won till freaking Saturday…” Ochoa said. “Not going to lie, it felt like I was watching a movie, but instead of the movie ending, it concluded with a ‘To Be Continued,’ which was so annoying. Heck, at one point, I gave up, thinking Trump was going to win.” 

Ochoa wasn’t the only one who was in a rage because of the slow results — so was President Trump. The resident constantly tweeted during and after the election that he had won and that the vote counters should stop counting because he won. 

He tweeted out at 9:44 p.m. on the night of the election, “We are up BIG, but they are trying to STEAL the election. We will never let them do it. Votes cannot be cast after the Poles are closed.” At that time, many polls around the US weren’t even closed. Since Election Day, Trump has been non-stop tweeting about how this election was a fraud and that the Democrats were trying to steal the election from him. 

He also filed five lawsuits against Arizona, Nevada, Georgia, Michigan and Pennsylvania, alleging that the process of vote-counting was not being conducted fairly and the Democrats were behind all this (most of these lawsuits have been thrown out by judges). Many of his voters were right behind him, also believing that this election was a fraud and refused to accept Joe Biden as president-elect. 

Photo Credit: Adriana Zehbrauskas from The New York Times

This caused many Trump supporters to protest all over the U.S., including in Phoenix. According to NPR, Trump supporters started protesting and venting outside the state Capitol building in downtown Phoenix, demanding a do-over, not just of the state’s presidential election but of the entire national vote. 

Student Julianna Ortiz from River Valley High School is a strong supporter of President Trump and says this regarding the Election: “I am not so happy about the media declaring Biden as the winning president and I do believe Trump will take the position before January due to the crazy amount of evidence of voter fraud.” 

She continued by saying, “I support Trump because I am very religious, and the peace agreement with Jerusalem is very important to me. I don’t think Biden will take office in January, but if he does, I will respect him as the president, and that’s all I have to say.”

The majority of Trump supporters don’t even believe the election for the presidency is over. Like, College Student Marijane Escontrias, who voted for Trump. 

“Well, he [President-Elect Biden] isn’t president yet, but if he is, then I respect that, and I hope he does a good job and doesn’t mess up our economy and other things,” Escontrias said. “So far, it looks like there have been videos of fraud, so I think it’s dumb unless they do a recount or something.

The majority of the Republican party also stood behind Trump, agreeing with him that the votes needed to be recounted. Rudy Giuliani, the former Mayor of New York City, but now President Trump’s lawyer, was very outspoken in presenting this view.

Photo Credit: M. Scott Mahaskey from POLITICO

He tweeted out that the Trump campaign has sued Michigan for their thousands of fraudulent ballots and that Pennsylvania and Michigan will go to Trump, and, “Affidavits will be published tomorrow.”

He continues to allege voter fraud in several states without providing any evidence and then said, “We have about 60 or 70 witnesses” but said many are afraid to come forward.

While President Trump, his supporters, and many Republicans refuse to accept the elections all over the internet and on the streets, citizens all over America and around the world have been taking Biden win as a joyful and memorable moment. 

On November 7, cities all over were making noise for the new president-elect. Even though we are still in a pandemic, it didn’t stop people from going out and having full-on street parties (with masks on).

AFHS senior Sanai Metoyer said that even though she couldn’t vote this year, she was thrilled that Biden won because only the worst would’ve come if Trump won. “I think if Trump won, it would have been bad for a lot of people, to be honest, and I think that many rights would be taken away,” she said. “I was anxious because, at one point, it was close, but it was the anticipation.”

Democrats such as Speaker Nancy Pelosi, U.S. Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, U.S. senators Elizabeth Warren, Chuck Schumer and Bernie Sanders also celebrated Biden and Harris’s win. All were congratulating and saying that new changes were going to be made right after Trump leaves. 

Even though this election was very chaotic, it was also very emotional. Not only did citizens happily dance in the streets or protest at their capitals, but they also cried either because Trump lost or because Biden won.

Photo Credit: Getty Images

Ochoa said that this Election was very emotional because many people suffered in these past four years and wanted hope, especially during this year. “I mean, after all that has happened, people felt that they were fighting not only for themselves but for everyone,” she said. “We were all fighting for the POC community, the LGBT+ community, the gender community, literally anyone who struggled or felt oppressed during these last four years.” 

Metoyer added, “I think it was really a battle of human rights and it was hard for a lot of people and very emotional because this year has really shown how Trump is as President and how he handles civil rights and it was upsetting.”

Whether you cried tears of joy or tears of defeat, we can all agree that this election was something that we’ll never forget. It’s so crazy we’re living history that we’ll soon be telling the next generation, and so on. Though the election is not TRULY over, it feels like it is, and now we can move on with our lives. Well, at least until January. 

Thank You Steve Kornacki and John King, you guys did all of America justice