Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Stand Together

Reading Chuck Wendig's reaction helped me sort through some of my thoughts. Enough at least, to write some sort of reaction of my own.

We started with hope yesterday and we ended with fear. Anger. Despair. The thing that should not have come to pass has come to pass because our country is divided. It's divided, not by principles or religion as those who chose to elect that man to office would have you believe. It is divided by hate.

It is divided by the fear of the Other. Of Women. Of Muslims and Jewish people. Of the Black and Latinx communities. Of the LGBT+ community. They are afraid of us because we are different. They are afraid of us because they think we are somehow stealing from them. But that's not even close to the truth.

This man pointed at all of us and declared us the enemy, and for the shame of us all, white women showed up in droves to agree with him. Young white men. Old white men. They came out and declared with him that the Other was less than themselves.

We can take symbolic solace in the fact that Hillary Clinton won the popular vote, the fifth candidate to do so. The entirety of the night, as states began to be called, I couldn't help seeing parallels to the Gore/Bush election night. I couldn't help wondering if the Clinton camp would question the close races.

But Secretary Clinton conceded with grace, reminding us of the hopes and dreams we strove for during this election process. I, and so many others, stepped up to the polls yesterday morning and placed a vote for the woman we hoped we be our Madam President. Now, we look at the future in despair, wondering how to survive the next four years.

But we aren't going to just survive the next four years. We aren't going to hide. We have to use every scrap of political weight. Every right granted us. Every medium of expression.

And we fight.

I don't know what's coming next. I don't even know what our country will look like this evening, let alone come January.

This is only the beginning, and if nothing else we now know that we must renew our efforts for unity amongst the marginalized among us, even as we cut loose the cancer that has been exposed by this election. There are people I never expected to actually support that man who did so. I doubt if I'll manage forgiveness any time soon.

We are stronger together, as Chuck, as Hillary have said. So much stronger together.

I am still scared, but I'm moving into anger. And I'm going to put all of this emotion into my work. Because artists are powerful creatures. All of us. We can influence the world.

We just have to speak up, and stand together.

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