Last night I gave up watching the election results in favor of going to sleep because I was exhausted and I didn’t feel like putting myself through it. When I did go to sleep, there was already a clear lead for Trump. I told my friend in some act of desperation that if something good happened with the rest of the results, I wanted her to call me.
Instead, when I woke up this morning I had 16 text messages. Ten from friends that were freaking out and scared out of their minds, five from friends or family that were encouraging me to do the best I could today, and one from a friend who was gloating.
I checked the results to see that Trump had won, and Republicans had won a majority in both the House and the Senate.
I have tried very hard to stay off of the internet with my political opinion, but this demands examining.
The results of this election have validated violence. The results of this election have validated discrimination.
I didn’t want to leave my apartment today because I was so afraid. I have already faced so much violence for being who I am. Violence I don’t want repeated.
My friends are scared. They’re scared because they are minorities of some variety, and they aren’t sure what will become of them.
I saw multiple people on Facebook today saying that this feels like validation of what their rapists did to them. Because Trump’s comments about sexually assaulting women contribute to the rape culture that says “it isn’t the rapists fault.”
Trump’s hateful speech about immigrants and racial minorities validates hatred, discrimination, and violence as being okay.
Trump’s hateful speech about the rights of LGBTQIA+ people validates hatred, discrimination, and violence as being okay.
We are scared. This is no longer a joke, though we may have thought it to be one for so long. It is the new reality; a reality which contributes to the concept that some people are worth more than other people, and it is terrifying.
Please, if you can today, check in with people that are of some minority status. Make sure they have the space to talk about this if they want to.
If you want to help some cool organizations in the face of this, go here.
If you feel like life isn’t worth it anymore, go here.
The sun still comes up tomorrow, and we will figure it out as we go. But there is no part of fear that is invalid. I am allowed to be scared, and anyone else who is scared is allowed to be scared.
We have to keep doing the work to keep ourselves safe, because all of us matter.