So. Donald Trump won. He won the first time with a little help from his friends and he won a second time when the Electoral College cast their votes today. That image is from when Pennsylvania voted. Just a stream of sad and mad emojis for 45 minutes across my screen.
This is our reality now. We’re living in the Trump America Reality Show. And we all have to take responsibility for it, especially if you’re a white, straight American. And I say that knowing full-well that no non-white American would think otherwise, because they have known for, oh, always, that they have to show up and fight. They haven’t had a choice.
No more petitions to email boxes that don’t have a pulse. No more phone calls to the harried staff of members of congress or state senators who are overworked and exhausted. No more mailing a ton of paper postcards to someone to make ourselves feel better. None of that matters except to make you *feel* like you’re doing something. I know because I signed all the things. I sent the postcards. I sent all the emails. And they didn’t change anything.
What You Can Do That Really Matters
Who do you know in your local government? Can you volunteer?
What are the policies that are being written? Can you help inform others?
What is happening this year in your area in regards to the LGBTQ community and their rights? Can you show up for them?
Is your city accepting refugees? Can you help tutor or acclimate them?
Is your city taking care of the homeless? Can you help do more than donate items?
Do you have a local SURJ? Can you join? Can you start a local chapter?
Is your church talking about important things? Can you speak out?
Do the schools your children attend treat hate appropriately? Can you find out?
Does your neighborhood have small businesses? Can you shop there?
Does your neighborhood have families that need support beyond Christmas? Can you become friends with them and help them all year round?
Does your family understand what’s happening in the world? Can you have tough conversations with them?
If there’s one thing we’ve learned through this last election cycle, it’s that if we don’t get really, REALLY involved in our local government and cities, we can’t do jack. It’s always been that way, but I think it’s been easier for most of us to just sit back and wait, hoping others will take the helm and then we freak out towards the end when terrible things are happening and we can’t change anything.
Trump is our president elect and there is nothing we can do about it. It’s happening. But if we all pitch in and create change in our local areas, we can change things. We can have real impact. If you’re a white person, please feel the weight of this on your shoulders. It’s appropriate. If you’re a straight person, please feel the weight of this on your shoulders. It’s appropriate. If you’re a Christian, white, male American, *please* feel the weight of this on your shoulders. It’s appropriate.
I know it would be so much easier to go back to bed and pull the covers over your head. I want to do that several times a day. But, I can’t. You can’t. It’s time to get super focused and fight harder than you ever have before.
When President Obama said we’re at our most vulnerable when we’re making enemies of each other, he was right. We’ve got to do better. Stop pointing fingers. Stop blaming each other. That ship has sailed. Start really talking.
No one is coming to save us. No one is going to make it better. This is our mess and we have to clean it up and I really think we can if we work together.