I've been back on campus since the election, since I teach MWF mornings. I had an equal amount of gloating in class...and outright terror. Not anger. Terror.
Some of my students are terrified that President Elect Trump is going to do what Democrats have been saying he's going to do: deport everyone with brown skin, make gay sex illegal, roll back rights sixty or seventy years by making birth control and abortion illegal...
Thing is, he can't. He literally cannot do these things. Not legally. All he can do is make sure that immigration laws are enforced, borders are guarded, and actually do the fucking job he was hired to do.
He does, however, have the precedents set by his predecessor, which aren't good, but...
He legally cannot deport people in this country who are here on a student visa, work visa, or working their way through the process to immigrate. Nor does he have any intention to.
He, as President, cannot make law. He cannot make gay sex, birth control, or abortion illegal. Nor does he have any intention to.
He cannot declare war. He cannot sign treaties. He cannot do anything, legally, that the current POTUS has been doing for the past eight years, and everybody on both sides hate him enough that he won't get away with trying.
What he can do is work with congress to sign laws placed before him. He can defund executive branch government offices, should he so choose. He can assess the state and direction of the nation, and suggest things for the legislative branch to maybe think about doing to fix a perceived problem, or right a wrong.
The things that a president, any president, can and cannot do, must and must not do, are all laid out in very plain language that takes a lawyer to misunderstand. Same as the responsibilities, duties, and acts forbidden to the legislative, and to the judicial, branches.
It's all there, in the contract between the Federal government and the American people that he must swear to uphold and defend in his oath of office.
8 minutes ago