I haven't written one of these in awhile, almost a year in fact. I don't know if they'll be regular again, but I'm feeling like I need a place to speak.
Earlier this week Presidential Elections came to a close and the results weren't what I wanted, it wasn't who I voted for. I needed a few days to process what this election means, not just for me, but for so many people across the country and the world.
This election has empowered a long quieted group of people, white people. I know what you're thinking, white people haven't been quiet ever, and you're right, but there's a group of White People (the capitol letters necessary about this particular subset of white people), who have been long quieted because progress has left them behind. They haven't had a candidate who said what they were thinking about the minority groups they so desperately want out. White people feel that they've lost control of their country because they wrongly believe that it's their country.
This election cycle has incited a very real and justified fear in minority and marginalized groups, a fear that did not end on election night and no matter who won, that fear stays because it's not all about the candidate, it's about what the candidates have inspired in people.
The country is the most divided that I have ever seen it. I'm scared for my friends of color, I'm scared for my immigrant friends, I'm scared for the LGBTQ+ community, I'm scared for women.
But I'm struggling to find my place in this new in country because I had two options:
1. I could hide behind the color of my skin, I can hide my sexual identity because as a bisexual, I can keep quiet about my struggled with anxiety and mental health, I can let men decided what is to be done with my body, I could hold my tongue about sexual assault, I could sit back and watch while minority groups are harassed and scared for their lives because that is what's easy for me.
But that's bullshit.
I think that J.K. Rowling put it best when she said, “Dark times lie ahead of us and there will be a time when we must choose between what is easy and what is right." I've never been one to sit ideally by and watch as bad things happen, the easy road doesn't really appeal to me.
So that leaves number two.
2. This option is harder, but in my experience doing what is right isn't always easy. I will stand by my friends of color, in the LGBTQ community, with disabilities, with vaginas (because it's a reproductive organ and not a bad word), who are immigrants, who are Muslim, who are Jewish. I will stand for anyone who is fearful for their safely because the last three days have seen a rise in hate crimes and hateful language.
There are times where I wish that I was blind to all of this, that I had my head in the sand, but then I think about all of the people that I love who are directly effected and it strengthens my resolve.
So I guess what I'm trying to say is, I'm here for a fight. I'm here to stand tall and not back down. I"m here to be an amplifier for the voices that are being shouted over. I am here and I'm not going anywhere.
I want to end with a message to my fellow white people. Do not devalue someone's fear because you are not afraid. The color of your skin protects you from a lot of the current climate, but that doesn't mean the fear isn't real.
Since election night there have been countless reports of hate crimes and of hate fueled vandalism. The fear that minorities feel is real and cannot be overlooked merely because you don't understand it. Don't believe me, look here, here, here, here, here, or simply Google, hate crimes since election.
I am aware that Donald isn't the one out there committing these crimes, but it is the people that he inspired with his hateful, fear mongering, racist, bigoted language.
This is the time for white people to step up. When you step back and watch you become part of the problem. This is your call to action. When you see hate being spewed, intervene. Prove that you're better than bigotry, prove that America truly can be great if we all work together to move forward, not back.