I’ve lived in fear and anxiety for over a year at the thought of a Trump presidency. “It can’t happen,” I’d tell myself. “The American people would never support someone so unqualified and prone to hateful rhetoric.”
Those fears came true in the early morning hours of November the 9th. America, my beloved country, had just elected a president who time and time again used his words to insult, belittle, bully, and demean women, minorities, and religious groups.
I stared at my milk-soaked cereal this past Wednesday morning, waves of disbelief stinging my spirit. “No. This can’t be. How? Why?” I dressed for work like any other normal day, but it was far from normal. The Trumpocalypse I so feared had arrived and I understood in that moment that I had two choices:
- Succumb to the dread and misery he so easily spews in his rhetoric
- Hold my head high and move forward, a pen in my hand and a voice that calls to be heard
Our country is fractured – there’s no denying that but what I find most plaguing is the level of apathy and anger infesting our perspectives. We’re hurting. We’re frustrated. We’ve been so for some time. Then here comes a presidential candidate who uses our suffering and anger to his advantage. He uses words like “crooked” and “rigged” – amplifying the position that government doesn’t understand us and chooses to ignore us.
He claims to love America yet insults the very government that has defined us for the past 240 years. A man who refuses to apologize for poor judgement or acknowledge any shortcomings. Through the words he chooses he is judge, jury, and executioner towards those who dare challenge him. And despite all the red flags, enough of my fellow Americans thought him qualified and fit to hold the most powerful title in our country.
Those of us vocalizing dissent and frustration over Trump’s election aren’t whining or sore losers. We’re baffled, confused, stunned, and scared. Scared at the likely prospect of rights stripped from women, the LBGT community, minorities, and our Muslim brothers and sisters. We’re terrified that all the positive strides we’ve made toward protecting our precious environment will be reversed. We’re concerned that the decisions made by the now President-Elect will cause dangerous ramifications not only on a local, state, and federal level but a global one.
I cast my vote for a candidate whose ideas and words lifted us up instead of knocking us down. An intelligent, poised, presidential woman whose words and ideas showed a belief that we were stronger when united and that our differences were not tools for division.
I am stronger than any of his negative rhetoric and misogynist views. I love the country in which I was born and raised, and I won’t abandon Her in Her time of need. I’ll stand up for the rights of Her citizens and for the health of Her people and Her land.
I can’t sit idly by and let the words and ideas of a Trump administration endanger the world and destroy the very foundation of our country’s moral fabric. And that is why I choose to share these words with you. I am a writer – one who believes that words matter. We must move forward and do so together. However, we must also acknowledge that hate, violence, and bigotry do exist – and CHOOSE to lift up not knock down. We must once again become the UNITED States of America.