In the wake of such a seismic election, bringing the country together will be difficult. The election and aftermath have reinforced the partisan divisions in American society and Donald Trump and his supporters have turbocharged distrust of civil institutions. All this has unfolded as the country continues to struggle through the pandemic (in November the US passed the bleak landmark of 250,000 COVID-19 deaths), while the nation’s media continues to highlight division over unity.
The question facing the nation as we move into 2021 is who can lead the country out of the tumult of the Trump era? President-Elect Joe Biden is putting a brave face on his plans, but Republican opposition looks to be entrenched and uncompromising. However, there are rays of light. A new era of civic activism, symbolised by the Black Lives Matter protests, has prompted many Americans to ‘get involved’. The next generation of corporate leaders is pushing an agenda where purpose and sustainability are integral. With trust in institutions at a low,1 perhaps America’s future will be led from the bottom-up.