I wake up in a world unequivocally worse than the world I knew yesterday. I feel the international stamp of shame that comes with my title as an American, and I weep.
I weep for the terrified refugees fleeing the atrocities of war and trying to make a better life for their families who will now be more at risk than ever under his red-faced rule.
I weep for the victims of rape and for the LGBTQ community, who will continue to see their injustices mirrored on a national stage.
I weep for my beloved land and all of the creatures that inhabit it. Who will champion the public land, the fish of the Animas river, and the Scaup in the Boreal forests in the face of the Bundys, unparalleled pollution, and the whiff of potential oil sources?
I weep for my fellow women, especially those who fought so hard for the right to vote, to decide what to do with our bodies, and those who thought they’d lived to see the day we broke that glass ceiling once and for all.
I weep for the Obamas, who put their heart and soul into changing this country for the better with more poise and grace than any family before them, and who will now have to watch as it crumbles away.
And still I ask, how can I help?
How can I help make my community a safer, more respectful place for people who don’t look quite the same as our Commander in Chief?
How can I help defy the odds and rise through the mist of misogyny into a respected career?
How can I help to bring pride back to a country which has, overnight, stunned the rest of the world into disbelief and surely delivered us to a new level of mockery?
How can I help but to feel disdain and disgust for my fellow Americans?
But no. I will not let myself stoop to the level of pessimism and hate against which we’ve been fighting this whole time. I will choose love and hope and I will stand with anyone who feels marginalized by this election. We must maintain our optimism and choose to come together as a nation. In the words of Nikki Giovanni,
“we will prevail, we will prevail, we will prevail.”