The Election of 2016

November 9, 2016, will always be characterized in my head as a cold, somber and rainy day in Columbus, Ohio. I never expected this to happen. The gravity of last night’s election continues to set into my gut heavier and heavier, and just when I think the weight can’t grow stronger, it does. I’m experiencing more emotions than I can articulate. I am angry at all of the people who didn’t exercise their civic duties and vote. I’m confused at how a people who have come so far demonstrated so much hate. I’m terrified at the implications of Trump’s presidency. And as a reaction, I can’t cry, I can’t scream, I can just stare blankly and feel my country that I put so much into burning around me. And just when I thought a democratic congress would save us, it didn’t. Point blank.

I am disgusted at the misogyny represented in this election, of course. But the worst part of it is that misogyny is flinging our country into something much larger than any of us can ever touch. What we are a part of right now is something much bigger than I’ve ever experienced in my conscious lifetime. And on the anniversary of Kristallnacht, this is and insult to lives past, present, and future.  I have spent my academic life studying dictatorships and how their dangerous ideologies prevail in great depth. But I never once thought I would live through it. We are living through dark history. The unity it’s creating is almost hauntingly beautiful. I stepped out onto an eerily silent campus this morning with a sickly, palpable air of fear, confusion, and sadness, and everyone was on the same page. This overwhelming feeling is not my own. It is shared. As a generation we are bolstering each other. As someone who is very conscious of the energies of other people, I am feeling a weight of community stronger than I ever have before in this time of grievance.

I like to end these posts with an optimistic tagline. I would love to say that our generation will save us and that it is individuals doing good and contributing to the world that will save us. But in a time this gravely dark, it’s too hard to say that. It’s too hard knowing how many people will be negatively effected by an uneducated, bigoted, and uninformed American decision. I am scared for the safety of my Hispanic and Muslim friends. I am shaking for the rights of my LGBTQ friends. I am, for the first time in my life, in fear for my political, social, and economic rights as a woman. What Donald Trump is unleashing is a prevalence of hate and violence, and at this time I can’t reconcile positive thoughts. I can offer no more than a shoulder to cry on and a wall to rant to. But I would be lying if I said there was a visible light at the end of this. We simply must try to do good, and against all of our urges, “Love Trump’s Hate”. If we stoop to his level, we are as bad as him.

And that’s my 2 cents on the matter.

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