Though I’m Canadian, I woke up yesterday in shock and sadness. A small part of me had hoped (and literally dreamed) that Hilary Clinton had managed to pull through. Alas, that was not the case. I know everyone, including myself, is tired of this election and tired of hearing about it.
But I’m tired because 72 hours ago, it seemed that America would finally have it’s first female president. Clinton is not perfect and I disagree with her on several points and I don’t think you should vote for her because of her gender. But her performance throughout the entire election was an image of presidency and professionalism. She was poised, collected, and prepared. She managed to hold her own and keep calm in situations her male counterpart could not. She was (and still is) knowledgeable, experienced, and capable. She was presidential. And I thought the rest of America saw what I saw.
I’m tired because that is apparently not the case. For me, it’s not the fact that we don’t have a female president. It’s the fact that a woman with over 30 years experience can still be questioned on her ability to do her job whereas a man with no experience can somehow get the most powerful position in the world. It’s the fact there is a president who has over 1200 lawsuits against him. A president who has double digits women accusing him of sexual assault. A president who believes climate change is a hoax and will likely die before he sees the consequences of his actions. A vice president who believes in defunding Planned Parenthood and believes in conversion therapy.
I’m tired because it seems that we have a nation that supports and pardons sexual assault, racism, sexism, bigotry, and homophobia. I’m tired because having a president who does all these pardons it for the rest of us. I thought America was better than that but apparently not.
Because I believe in democracy, I will accept the results of the election. I will remain open-minded and optimistic.
I’m tired, but I haven’t given up. For anyone out there scared for the future of your country, please know that it’s okay. It’s okay to be scared. It’s okay to break down and cry about this. It’s okay to be tired. But once that’s done, remember that it will get better. The world will keep turning, the stars will keep shining, and life will go on. Midterms will still need to be studied for, papers will need to be written, work will still be there, and classes will have to be attended. Life will, as it always does, go on. You’ve gotten through everything in your life up to this point. You will get through this as well.
Know that you will be protected. I always believe that there are more people out there who want to do the right thing and I believe people are inherently good. Know that you will be okay. It will be hard. You will argue with people who will refuse to see your side of the argument and remain stuck in their ways. You will encounter people who won’t listen to reason, who refuse to understand that equality for others is not oppression for them, and will swear equality has already been achieved and refute anything that denies their claims.
You might be tired but remain strong. Remain calm and collected and presidential. Be prepared and poised. Keep your cool. We can fight this and we can change what we have. Try to educate people rather than insulting them. Be nice and polite, but be bitchy when it’s called for. Don’t sit back and be passive, but protect yourself. Remember, we’ve made it this far and we will continue to go farther.
I’m tired but I will keep fighting. I will fight for what I believe in harder than I did before because it is going to be harder to achieve than before. I will not stop until everyone is considered equal. I will not stop until women have rights to their own bodies. I will not stop until everyone can marry the person they love. I won’t stop until everyone has equal access to healthcare and education. I will keep fighting until everyone has access to what they need. I will do my best to fight and take down institutional barriers.
I’m tired but I’m inspired to continue to fight for what I believe in.
I’m tired but I’m still here.
For anyone feeling overwhelmed, please visit this page. It has a lot of links to great things that will help you. And I’m always here for anyone who may need it.