Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Dear America, We Deserved Trump and You Know It.

FYI: I usually don't talk politics on the internet because I don't feel qualified enough... but given that Trump just became president elect and he clearly has no experience, I feel more than qualified enough now to write a blog post on American politics. That, and I at least have my masters in public policy.... #overqualified

Dear America,

Now that its almost been 24 hours since I've had time to listen to others and reflect, I just want to know.... What. the. fuck. did. you. do. ?!

You elected a man who has zero political experience into office. You elected a man who stood up and said whatever he wanted, did whatever he wanted, and ultimately was rewarded with power. You elected a man without thinking of future generations but only for your immediate future.

Do you know what this means for OUR future? It means that we just gave Kanye and Kim enough confidence to run in 2020. #ifhecandoitanyonecan

But jokes aside (i hope), this is the first time that people have been legitimately scared for their lives and rights as Americans and as people. The first time I have seen adults CRY, IN PUBLIC, because they are worried. You want to make America great again? You cannot start by building it off fear.

One of the most texts and responses I got from friends last night and today (besides the "fuckkkkkk") was "how did we let this happen???" 

Unfortunately, as much of an optimistic person as I am, I was not surprised by the outcome. In fact, I've always believed that Trump was the president that America truly deserves. Over the last few years we have become a society so caught up in protecting "ourselves", a society that has backed movements only through social media to forget it a week later, a society obsessed with 'likes' and celebrity life, a society based on all "talk" and "what's right for me".... We became a society that stopped knowing what it truly meant to love your neighbors.... And our neighbors ONLY became people that looked like me and you or shared the same values and beliefs.

But that is not America.

America, as we 'shockingly' saw last night, is not just those who have the same educational background, income bracket, and beliefs and values. But instead, America is full of people who experience different struggles on a day to day basis that we cannot even fathom because we will never be in that position to do so. And so, instead of sitting down with our neighbors and listening, we judged. And we judged harshly -- and yes, this goes for both sides.

Instead of creating progressive dialogue, we immediately labeled people as bigots and racists, we told them we couldn't stand them, and we told people that they were horrible humans- a waste of space. We were rude and disrespectful and hurtful. And we told ourselves that we had the right to do all that because it was inflicted on us. But that isn't what grown ass adults are supposed to do, okay?? Grown ass adults are supposed to sit down, talk and think it through, and think of ways to be understanding, inclusive, respective, and progressive. #WhenTheyGoLowWeGoHigh

We failed to do that.

In our failure to truly understand the other side with compassion and love, we elected a man who does not embody the ideals of what it means to be an American in 2016. And in that, we also sadly failed the rest of the world. In some ways, we have lost our right to tell any country that it cannot discriminate based on sex, religion, race, and sexual orientation.

That is terrifying.

The second response that I heard the most was... what can we do? 

In the midst of all of this, the different responses I heard today gave me hope for a better future and change. Unfortunately, no one had a fix-all response... but that's okay. Because if there's one thing I learned today, it's that we are all different with different talents and experiences. We will each have different battles going forth because we are different.  And unfortunately, it will take time and a lot of effort to create change. So where do we even begin to start?

Last night I spoke with the host of the election party I attended. He was clearly a well-established man and he spoke to me about how at age 27, he envisioned where he wanted to be ten years from now in his career, setting little goals throughout. He inspired me to start thinking of my own career ten years down the road.

But reflecting on the outcome of the election, I realized that I cannot start to ONLY envision my own future. I need to also envision the kind of future I want to be a part of... The kind of future I want my niece and nephew to grow up in. I need to set goals and milestones so at the end of the ten years, I can proudly say that I helped create a platform for future generations to come. We cannot start acting until we have a clear idea of what it is we want so badly and how we think we can get there. So if you're feeling completely lost and helpless, start to think of the kind of future you will be proud to be a part of. #BeTheChangeYouWishToSeeInTheWorld

All hope is not lost (this is optimistic me emerging). If you took a moment to look around today, you probably saw or heard people stand up in solidarity with those who fear and worry for their lives. That is love. And going forth, we need to not only hold on to that, but also remember the consequences that hate breeds. We need to remember that our neighbors aren't just people that you easily get along with.

America, we will be okay. Sooner or later, #lovetrumpshate.

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