Really interesting and well-argued piece, Riley. I think some later Western thinkers, such as Hume and Berkeley, who believe that objective reality is in fact made up only of ideas, may disagree with you. Essence Before Existence has not been accepted by all Western philosophers after Plato, such as Spinoza, who believed that existence can be a necessary part of something’s essence. Perhaps a more apt title would have been Plato Caused Alternative Facts. Also, I wonder how exactly you define “alternative facts” as it relates to your piece? It doesn’t seem to be in line with Kellyanne Conway’s original use of the term.
Overall though, great piece! I love seeing philosophy still being referenced in political discourse.