I live in solid-blue California, a state where within minutes of the polls closing, the electoral college votes were called for Hillary Clinton. And as soon as it looked like Donald Trump would become president elect, I started seeing anti-Trump protests pop up on my Facebook feed. Since Wednesday, there have been reports of students walking out of schools, protesters blocking highways, and people rioting (including breaking windows and lighting fires) on the streets in Oakland and San Francisco (I reside in both cities.) Although I don’t support Donald Trump and support the right of people to peacefully assemble, I think the protesters are 100% wrong to be protesting at all.

Like it or not, Trump won fair and square. He won despite the fact that he was outspent, establishment Republicans were against him, and every poll and media outlet assumed that Clinton would win.

It’s true that he did not win the popular vote. However, participating in elections mean that you consent to the system. That’s why many libertarians do not vote; they think the system is unfair and don’t want to participate. When I vote, I know fully well that my candidate might not win, but I’m going to accept whoever got the most votes as the winner anyway. That’s how elections work. Just because my candidate didn’t win doesn’t mean that democracy is wrong. So people shouldn’t be chanting “Not my president” because they agreed when they voted that whoever came out on top would be their president.

I think there are more productive ways to enact change and express frustration than by lighting things on fire. I urge protesters to volunteer for the candidates they support and get more involved in local elections. For example, if you really love progressive candidates, why not start volunteering for Gavin Newsom’s 2018 gubernatorial campaign? I’ve lived under his thumb for most of my life (he was supervisor and mayor of San Francisco, now Lt. governor of California) and I assure any Bernie bros that he is basically a socialist. You don’t have to just vote for the lesser of two evils every four years; you can support good candidates early in their careers and help them get on the national stage.

I also think the protesters should reach and out and try to understand why people voted for Donald Trump. All they are doing now is saying, everyone that voted for Trump is sexist, racist, stupid, don’t talk to me ever again if you voted for Trump, etc. I personally think that Trump won because he was able to get the votes of Rust Belt residents that have lost their jobs due to globalization, outsourcing, and automation. My parents worked in factories before they were laid off (neither of them vote) so I understand why Trump’s message of bringing jobs back is so appealing to working class voters. I can never blame anyone for voting in their own self interest even if I think that rationally, they are wrong. I don’t think there is any way for the Democrats to win unless they are willing to help this group of people.

Finally, I think that people need to be reminded of the benefits of limited government and state’s rights, which libertarians have been championing for decades. Yes, Trump is president, but there are two other branches of government, and 50 states. There is a lot that people can do on all levels of government to counter the policies of Trump’s that they disagree with.

So for the next four years, let’s remember that we all have a chance to make a change in this country.