The U.S. election left Toronto FC goalkeeper Clint Irwin unsettled, to say the least.
“Ultimately it’s concerning, at least for me as an American citizen,” he said in the aftermath of Donald Trump’s win. “I really hope that the country can come together. I hope it’s not as bad as I think it’s going to be.
“It’s tough to say that but I really don’t want to see anything bad happen.”
The 27-year-old native of Charlotte, N.C., watched the campaign closely. Irwin, who studied political science at Elon University, is a thoughtful type who has written pieces for Sports Illustrated and the Guardian on athletes and sport.
Irwin, traded to Toronto in January from the Colorado Rapids, cast his Colorado ballot for Hillary Clinton via mail. Colorado went to Clinton while Irwin’s native North Carolina opted for Trump.
Judging from social media, Irwin started election night with some optimism.
“Election Day hopes: high turnout, peaceful polls, respected results. You can do this, America,” he tweeted.
But that did not last long.
“Someone please light up the CN Tower red, white and blue so we can raise awareness of America’s impending doom,” he tweeted later.
Irwin’s concern was more for others than himself.
“Look for me personally, I’m a white male pretty well-off American,” he said Wednesday. “For me, things are probably not going to change, if anything they’re going to get better — taxes are probably going to go down for me, I’m going to pay less to the government, I’m going to get to keep a lot of money.
“But for a lot of my friends who are maybe first-generation immigrants, second-generation immigrants, African-Americans, people who don’t look like me or people who are the people that Trump singled out a lot in his campaign, I’m not sure what it’s going to look like. And that’s what concerns me.”
Still he said he has looked into the issue of dual citizenship and planned to ask teammate Will Johnson about it although he wasn’t sure it was for him. Johnson holds U.S. and Canadian passports.
Irwin, who watched the election results with his girlfriend at home, said Trump’s victory was the talk of the Toronto dressing room the day after.
Irwin added he believes the election result was due to some long-standing issues.
“I think it’s pretty clear that there’s a significant distrust of our elected leaders and politicians. And what’s happened is that we’ve had one candidate who’s capitalized on that. And I think what has happened is that some of the economic anxieties of a large segment of people have gone unaddressed for a number of years and voters have gotten fed up with it. And they’ve been oversold and undelivered for a significant amount of years.
“And this is a reaction to it ... people are just fed up and they want anybody who’s different than what they’ve seen and that’s what we got (Tuesday).”Report Typo/Error