I am utterly disappointed with the result of my country’s election. I find it unfathomable that so many people would support two men who call Mexicans rapists, degrade people of color, want to revoke marriage equality, believe in shock therapy for LGBTQ+, do not value those who are disabled, and support sexual assault and degradation of women. I am not saying all Trump supporters are misogynistic, racist, hypocrites, but I am saying they support two people who are.
Their slogan is “make America great again” but please tell me, when was America so great? In my America we are a group of people who strive towards progress and bettering our country, creating greatness. However, in his America he is referencing the past. Mr. Trump I ask you this, do you truly believe America was great when people of color were treated as lesser than animals, women were property of men, and LGBTQ+ were assaulted and killed on the street? When the majority of the people living in this country did not have the right to vote, and were barely covered by the first amendment? You are referencing a time which should be an embarrassment of our nation, not something to boast about.
When I think of America’s greatness I think of Margaret Brent, Sarah Josepha Hale, Dorthea Dix, Sojourner Truth, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Sarah and Angelina Grimke, Susan B. Anthony, Harriet Tubman, Elizabeth Blackwell, Frances Elizabeth Willard, Ada Lovelace, Jane Addams, Margaret Stanger, Frances Perkins, Ella Baker, Rosa Parks, and many more. I am proud of these women for taking a stance for equal rights; they were triumphant in history, believing in the opposite of what Mr. Trump believes.
I am influenced by strong and brave women. Names such as Audrey Hepburn, Maya Angelou, Gabrielle Giffords, Michelle Obama, Emma Watson, and, yes, Miss Hillary Clinton. These women have shown love to others and persistence towards progress for human rights. I was raised by a mother who’s part of the National Organization for Women, has taken a stance for equality, is well educated, insightful, compassionate, and does not allow anyone to sell her short of what she is worth. I have an aunt/god mother who has openly defended her belief in equal marriage. I have an aunt who is the president of a company, a sister who has raised over a million dollars in scholarship funds so homeless children can attend college. I have a sister who has taken the initiative to move to another country and who embodies what it means to be a successful, independent woman. I have a brilliant sister in law who is on a path to becoming a CFO of an incredibly successful company and my great grandmother stood up to an abusive husband. My female friends are striving for high positions in society to spark change, my fellow female classmates are changemakers, and my best friend, who is from another country, has defied her country’s female stereotype, persisting to be her true self, despite looks of disapproval. I have always been surrounded by incredible women and to think that our elected president bragged about grabbing a woman by the p***y disgusts me. Women are not your sex toys, we are brilliant beacons of light paving the roads for progress, making breakthroughs in society.
It has been less than 48 hours since Trump was elected president and I have already had numerous friends confide in me with fear. My friend, who is Puerto Rican by the way (A US TERRITORY), but a U.S. citizen, whose father has spent his life working for the U.S. military was told to “go back to Mexico” and shown hate for speaking Spanish on the phone with her mother. I have friends who have different colored skin than me and are terrified for their lives. My LGBTQ+ friends are distraught over the idea of equal marriage being revoked and disgusted by the fact that a leader of our country openly supports shock therapy. Females in my life are afraid of our nation not only digressing with progress but disregarding serious incidents such as sexual harassment.
There are many people are not only upset with the results of the election but also struck with fear, so I have one thing to ask of you. Preach this quote by Ellen Degeneres after the Orlando shooting: “less hate, more love. Less tearing apart, and more coming together”.
Many people are feeling a whirlwind of emotions; they are concerned for their safety because of the color of their skin, whether they have a disability, their sexual identity, because they are a female, etc. It is an awful thing to fear for ones life, and no one should face hate or discrimination. Please do not spread any hateful words or comments. Show love to others, especially if you are someone who is not a minority (yes I’m talking to you white males). Do not assume anything. Do not assume that because someone is wearing a hijab or turban they are terrorists, do not assume that because someone is speaking Spanish they are illegal, do not assume that because someone has dark skin they are committing a crime. There is enough brutality in the world and we have the power to put a stop to it. Unfortunately this election sparked a controversy due to the drastically opposing views of both parties. To some it has arisen feelings of hate, whether towards the candidate or towards other fellow Americans. No one should be afraid to wear a hoodie at night, hold hands with their lover of the same sex, speak another language besides English, be in public because they have a disability, or be alone with a male because she is a female. Let’s embrace our differences and recognize that no one, I repeat NO ONE, wants or deserves to face hate.
So my task for you: spread love. As my mother and father always told me “if you don’t have anything nice to say, do not say anything at all”, this also includes expressions. Check yourselves, do not glare at others for practicing another religion, straying from heteronormativity, having different colored skin, etc. This election has already created a divide and brought out the worst in people. It does not matter if you are a republican, democrat, or independent, you have the capability to spread love. Smile at someone, or if you live in New York, give a compliment or make room for someone on the subway. Reject excluding others and open your arms, you never know what people’s differences can teach you. People right now are currently in fear for the safety of their lives, having control over their bodies, and being able to have the basic human right of expressing love, they have enough on their mind and going on in their lives so everyone please add to the love and kindness in the world. Be nice to each other, you do not need to go out of your way, you simply need to stop spreading hate.