The Morning After
Those of you who have known me for a while know that it I need time to process things. It’ll be a few days before I’m in a position to offer any insights about what has gone down this election. But there are a few disparate thoughts I want to share this morning while they are fresh and my feelings are raw:
1. Democracy is a bitch. But of course, any other alternative is much worse.
2. Emotions are running high. I’ve seen a lot of fear, pain and anger already online today. Let’s resolve to let people have their space right now. There will be time to deconstruct what went wrong and why. But this morning, a lot of people are hurting and legitimately so, and we should make room for that.
3. The thing about democracy is this: We are all responsible to some degree for what happens here. No one ever wants to look at their own contributing role when things go wrong, but we absolutely MUST do it if we want to avoid repeating what has happened this year, politically and otherwise.
4. To that end, I’ll share a couple mistakes I made:
– Even after years of telling people that polls lie and that social media creates a bubble, I fell for both of them and allowed my critical thinking to become complacent. I was absolutely, 100% wrong in my prediction for this election’s outcome – because I chose my information wrong.
– I was far too intolerant of people within my own party who pushed back against Clinton. I contributed to isolating and antagonizing them, rather than trying to get them on board.
– I didn’t do nearly enough talking to conservatives. I literally spent no time talking to conservatives personally about the race.
5. This election, coupled with Brexit has proved that white supremacists working together internationally – even if it’s just ideologically – to organize and spread their message.
6. One bright spot is that Texas has showed itself to have a lot of political opportunity for Democrats.
7. I can literally think of a couple hundred people I know personally who are more qualified to represent me in various capacities than Donald Trump. I hope this is a signal to good, moderate citizens that if they have any inkling of running for political office, there is a chance. If that guy can get to the highest office in the land, you can get elected, too. America needs good leadership, and if you want to run and represent me and my family and our vision for America, I’ll support you.
8. I’m taking inventory today of all my assets, privileges and trying to figure out the best possible way for me to use them in the coming years. I sincerely ask that you do the same. Our world is full of inequities, but all of us have SOMETHING we can use to deconstruct oppressive systems, and build something better. Don’t leave it up to anyone else, or disparage what you don’t have. Figure out what it is you *can* do, and do it with all your might.
9. I apologize to anyone I’ve hurt this year in my various posts, rants and jokes. I’m not perfect and I reserve the right to be an asshole sometimes — but I don’t set out to intentionally hurt people, and you should know that I will always value my individual human relationships more than tribal affiliations.
10. It’s ok to be afraid. Just not to be incapacitated by fear.
I love you.