Like every other Democrat I know, I’m struggling to find my balance in the aftermath of the election. It isn’t just my disappointment that a well-qualified woman lost to an ignorant, self-centered, big-mouth (though that is hard to swallow and proof of the enduring sexism in this nation. It is the looming anxiety about how the ignorant big mouth will attempt to govern that causes me the most anxiety. On election night, I told my anxious son that we would be okay and that our challenge moving forward would be to help those who would be actively harmed by a Trump Administration.
I believe that except it’s hard for me to define “okay” in a world in which many of my fellow citizens are afraid because of their race or their religion. I hear NPR interviews —— tough question, quality journalism interviews —— with Trump advisors or active leaders of the white nationalist neo-Nazi movement and I am overcome with tearful anger; I am made physically ill by the hate-mongering offered in a cheerful voice. That’s a far cry from okay.
Nearly two weeks in to an unthinkable electoral outcome, I still feel sick to my stomach. Something tells me that will be my primary political emotion of the next four years. I know there are leaders who will fight to move us in the right direction. I know that I will continue to be outspoken. I believe in the decency of the majority of us; the folks who cast ballots for Hillary Clinton. I want (and need) to believe that the results of the popular vote demonstrate that there are millions of us —— 63 million; 1.7 million more than voted for Trump ——- who will stand up and demand that we be a nation of justice and liberty for all.
For now, then, the plan is to be vigilant and take it one day at a time. It feels like a very long four years are on the horizon.