Election Day I got added to the Pantsuit Nation group on Facebook. It was so positive and supportive. People shared stories and photos of voting for women’s rights, for the rights of the differently abled, for the rights of POC, for the rights of LGBT, for the rights of immigrants, for the rights of minorities, for the rights of the First Americans. We were voting for something. I read people’s stories of hope throughout the day, contributed one of my own and felt more positive than I ever have through this election.
Unlike a lot of liberals, I never let myself completely believe we had it in the bag until that morning. I’ve also noticed a geographical shift here. People like my sister, who lives in a liberal college town and is getting her Ph.D in sociology, thought Trump never had a chance. Friends who had moved to Austin were angry that Clinton wasn’t left enough and didn’t support her (which put me in opposition with people I’m not used to being in opposition with, feel like I’ve been fighting a war on multiple fronts). I worried that they forgot what it is like to live in a red state where people are still foaming at the mouth over the fact that gays can get married and well, to be honest, that slavery ended (and no, I am not exaggerating). I worried about gerrymandering. I worried that emotional fearmongering of immigrants was stronger than reason and compassion. And the liberals like me stuck in a red area had the same trepidation and concerns. Let me say, next time, I hope the liberals in liberal areas listen to us more.
A lot of liberals wanted all or nothing. So now we’ll have nothing.
I hope people in blue areas are happy, because us in the red areas are going to feel it the worst. Maternal mortality rates in Texas have doubled thanks to cuts to Planned Parenthood, and I’ve had to work with those women as they struggle through pregnancies they were unable to prevent. We’re up creek without a paddle.
We forgot that change is slow and incremental, and even when society changes, attitudes don’t and that the backlash against progress is real. They forgot how much we struggled to get where we were and we blind to the people angry that we got the rights we did. In asking more, they forgot to protect what we have. We let our guard down, and a lot of people are going to suffer.
And now Republicans have the house, senate and the White House. And really, they should have been grievously wounded for putting a man like Trump on their ticket and for their Supreme Court shenanigans. I am SEETHING that Obama was unjustly denied his powers to appoint judges (racism much!?) I am seething that Republicans have been obstructionist, racist, sexist, etc, and been given a blank check.
I’m furious that Clinton, who has gracefully given up power not once, but twice (2008) is painted as a power hungry whore who will stop at nothing to get into office when Trump threatened to not accept the results if he lost. I am tired of white men projecting their corruption onto her and getting away with it. And further, wtf did they think she was going to do with that power, other than what she has in the past? Give children medical insurance and save their lives!? Horrors! So corrupt! Reform the adoption system to make it easier for children to find loving families!? Horrors! So corrupt! Make sure that children with disabilities have the same educational advantages as typical children!? Horrors! So corrupt! THOSE are Clinton’s legacies and successes. Trump legacy is taking advantage of disadvantaged people and screwing them over. People deluded themselves into thinking this was an election between two evils. And it was far from it.
I am furious at the electoral college. I am furious that I live in a state where because of the electoral college, my vote doesn’t count. As my mom pointed out this morning, the electoral college disenfranchises people who have a minority vote based on where they live. And finally, I am sick o the fact that the two times in my life where a candidate won the popular vote but lost it was a Democrat. And we all know how well that worked for us last time. Bush was a disaster, Trump is worse.
So now we’re looking to lose a lot of the progress we made. I’ve been cycling through boughts of anger, sadness, depression, crying, numbness. I barely ate yesterday and am not doing much better today, the anxiety I feel is simply overwhelming. I have never been so terrified for our future, and I have two small kids right now.
I want to move and flee, but as someone in France reminded me, right wing extremism is a global phenomenon right now. I don’t know that anywhere in the planet is safe right now. Further, we don’t have four years to wait to get things done with global warming. We are already feeling the catastrophic effects and there is talk about having to evacuate people and abandon cities in coastal and island areas in Louisiana, Alaska, and in some cities on the east coast.
So I’m left thinking my best option is Mars.
At anyrate, I’ve been triggered this whole damn election. I can’t stand to listen to/look at Trump because I get so triggered every time he bashes people. He is a bully, and it reminds me of being bullied. I was looking forward to never having to look at him again after Nov 8th. Now he’s going to be around for four years. There is nothing anyone can say that will make this easier. It’s not over and time to move on as people keep saying. It’s just beginning.