Election Results

"Pantsuit nation?" I asked. It was Wednesday morning, the day after the election, shortly before 6 AM. Francisco tends to wake up around 4 AM, so I knew he already was aware of the results.

He sadly shook his head, "I couldn't believe it, man." I legitimately thought he was joking at first, but he quickly made clear that he wasn't. Trump had been elected President of the United States.

I felt stunned by the news. We've since dissected the demographic breakdown and had several in-depth discussions, just trying to understand how this happened.

In a particularly eye-opening conversation, Francisco said [and I'm paraphrasing]: "I'm lucky in that I've never felt discriminated against before. But in a way, this makes me feel like I'm not welcome here." And I see where he's coming from. It's one thing for people to want a change in government and to "make America great [again]." But you can't ignore the other part of that message that seems utterly rooted in abject racism, sexism, and bigotry.

I've been in shock, I've been angry, confused, amused that the Canadian immigrant site crashed, and ultimately, just disappointed. I feel like this could have been a momentous day, and instead it's an utter disappointment.
But...it's been a few days, and the initial shock has worn off. I've grown weary of reading all the angry posts on Facebook, but have ultimately realized that people are just afraid. Our nation just turned a huge corner, and no one knows where we're going to end up. And that's scary. Especially so for those who have felt targeted my Trump's hate campaigns, like my husband who would technically be a first-generation immigrant.

As cliche as it sounds, you can't fight hate with hate. What's done is done, and there's not much left to do but to give this man a chance to lead our country. But it's a good opportunity to remind ourselves of all the differences that exist in the world and how we have to be more tolerant of those who hold different opinions. This morning, I was chatting with a friend, just catching up on stuff when he made a statement and then I responded with my opinion. He literally answered with "Jesus Christ I never seen anyone so hard headed". I was taken aback at the inappropriateness of this comment.

I literally had to explain to him that it's not okay to talk to your friends like that. It's perfectly acceptable to disagree with them and to have a discussion on your differing perspectives, but it's not okay to attack someone for having a viewpoint that is different than yours. I recommended a more appropriate response: "hmm, that's an interesting perspective. I tend to think of it like this... but thank you for sharing your opinion with me. I appreciate that you value me enough to be open and honest, and I love that we're both comfortable with embracing diversity in thought. You are awesome, and I care about you. Here's a hug and a cookie. Also, a million dollars. Have a nice day!"

OK, so maybe not the most realistic response, but this world just needs more kindness and positivity. Especially now. It's okay for people to think differently and have different perspectives, and we shouldn't belittle them or insult them for their beliefs. I think I know of maybe three people who likely voted for Trump [I'm sure there are many more who just haven't been as vocal about it], but honestly, I mostly feel curiosity, not hatred or anger.

We don't have to unfollow people who post things we don't agree with. Use it as an opportunity to learn and understand; don't isolate yourself into only seeking news to reaffirm your beliefs. Challenge yourself and be open to new ideas. I know I'm not perfect about this, but I'm making a point to try harder. Or perhaps I should just rechannel my efforts in to making a move to New Zealand happen. :P 


  1. I work at an agency downtown and all of my superiors and fellow employees are hardcore Republicans. They all proudly voted for Trump and weren't surprised at all that he won. As the only Democrat there, I feel at this point that my job might be on the line. It's gotten that hostile between the two party ideologies. As it stands, I try not to make waves, am vague with them about my political beliefs, and try not to drive myself crazy thinking too much on the idea that we're all living in a Twilight Zone episode right now. If they can't get why I find it horrifying that they support a man who has promoted hateful, divisive rhetoric toward women and minorities, then it makes me seriously question why I continue to stay where I am.

    1. I'm sorry you have to work in that environment, and I hope the atmosphere definitely improves.


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