It may seem like the most important part of a movement or a revolution is to be angry and loud. To get out there and march and scream at the top of your lungs. The anger, the pain, and the disappointment you are feeling needs to be felt. That’s what drives our passion and creates change and makes us march for miles without complaining about how sore the soles of our feet are. But it needs to be countered with love and healing. We cannot tire ourselves out with rage and become numb to the hatred. In times like these, art is more important than ever. Love is more important than ever. Community is more important than ever.
Thank you to everyone who submitted, we stand in solidarity.
Shock. Fear. Anger. Grief. Acceptance.
These are the feelings I’ve been cycling through ever since I found out. Shock that Hillary didn’t win (I never realized how much I expected her to) and that Trump is actually going to be our leader. Fear for the people of color, LGBTQ+, immigrants, Muslims, and women that are going to be hurt by this election and all that it means for equality in our country. Anger towards my friends and family and everyone else that supported or voted for this monster, willing to overlook the evil because it doesn’t directly affect them. Grief for my country that I love, and my fellow Americans who are scared for their lives or their freedom. And finally acceptance – not accepting that Trump’s America is how it’s going to be – but instead accepting that the election is decided and the only thing any of us can do at this point is to keep loving. Keep watching out for each other and protecting each other and making our voices heard. It’s going to be hard, but love can still trump hate if we each decide every day that we will not let the hate win.
Social activist and feminist writer bell hooks once said that “the practice of love is the most powerful antidote to the politics of domination”. At the moment, I am at an intense loss for words. However, despite all the unimaginable pain, fear, and sorrow that is so deeply present right now, I implore you to use every bit of love and positivity you possess and put it out into the universe. It is our collective duty, as a people, as a generation, as individuals, to not give up – for the sake of each and every one of us. We must protect and support each other. The fight isn’t lost. We can’t (and won’t) let it happen.
You are strong, you are worthy, and you did not deserve this election. The world is in a sad place, but there is still beauty in it. My state of MN just elected the first Somali-American Lawmaker for the house Ilhan Omar (a woman). We can still progress, and we can still be vocal. Take some time to self love, reflect and understand your anger. It is not a bad thing, it is justified, but it needs to manifest itself in a productive loving way. Stand up for what you believe in spread love. Write letters, make calls, go protest, make art, make love. Educate and talk with others in an open dialog to which we can hopefully progress as a nation. Above all else, do not give up hope, this is still our country, and we will take it back. #lovetrumpshate #pussygrabsback
“Mom I’m scared.” Says a young brown girl peering up at her mother, hair glistening skin the color of caramel hazelnut candies. I sit in silence.
“Mom i’m scared.” Says a boy skin the color while walking down the street at night. “The kids at school call me names and pull at my hair.” I walk in silence trying to pull words from the empty vessel that is my soul.
“Mom i’m scared.” Says a girl putting on her hijab to go out to the market. Her eyes dripping with tears , bottom lip quivering. “I don’t want to be called a terrorist and I hate the way they look at me on the street. It makes me feel small.” I take her hand trying to show her that she has a heart of gold. I try and try to keep my childrens spirits up only to realize mine are slowly fading too. My heart is shattered and filled to the brim with pain. I look at my child and for the first time I weep. “For honey , I am scared too.”
You are not alone in your fear. You are not alone in your sadness. You are not alone in your anger. We may have been knocked down, but we sure as hell will stand back up. We will keep fighting. We will keep educating ourselves. We will not be silenced. The future might seem scary right now, but together we will overcome. Together, we will love. Together, we will change the world. You are so loved. This is only the beginning, baby!
I’m sorry. I’m sorry that you live in a country that is now lead by a man who supports rape culture. I’m sorry that your leader thinks locker room chat doesn’t demean you, degrade you, and demoralize you. I’m sorry that some don’t even recognize your oppression. I’m sorry that you feel like your body does not belong to you. I’m sorry that there’s a man in power who thinks it is his jurisdiction to tell you what you may or may not do with your body. I’m sorry that it has come to this. I’m sorry we have arrived here.
Dear Muslim community,
I am sorry. I’m sorry that you have been shamed and blamed by a man who does not know your pain. I’m sorry that you do not feel welcome a country you have been living in your whole life. I’m sorry you don’t feel welcome in a country that was established upon liberty and justice for all. I’m sorry that there are so many contradictions in our laws and in our people. I am sorry that your morals have been attacked by people who are uninformed and unable to see that you are not the problem, hate is. I’m sorry that it has come to this. I’m sorry we have arrived here.
I am sorry. I am sorry that your sexuality is under attack. I am sorry there are people in this country who think there is something wrong with you for being so empowered in your love. I’m sorry that it threatens people to see you so comfortable in your skin. I’m sorry that you have been fighting for so long for the right to love who you love. I’m sorry if you don’t feel seen the way you want to be. I’m sorry it has come to this. I’m sorry we have arrived here.
I am sorry. I am sorry that you feel like you can’t call America home when it was established by people, for people like you. I am sorry if you feel like you are unwanted because you aren’t. I’m sorry that you have been painted a criminal by a man who has built his company on the labor of your people. I am sorry that it has come to this. I’m sorry we have arrived here.
Dear African Americans,
I am sorry. I am sorry that there is so much pain. I’m sorry for the anger, the hate. I’m sorry that you have to chant for your people when they are taken from you too soon. I’m sorry that you don’t feel like your voice is being heard. I’m sorry that there are people who don’t support your movement. I’m sorry that privilege clouds people’s judgement. I’m sorry that some cannot see your struggle and they lack empathy. I’m sorry it has come to this, I’m sorry that we have arrived here.
Dear Trump supporter,
I am sorry. I am sorry that fear has taken over. I am sorry that you support a man who is proud to be sexist, racist, islamophobic, misogynistic, transphobic, and homophobic.
I’m sorry you think hate is the solution. I’m sorry you’re scared of liberation. I’m sorry you think you have to make America great again. I’m sorry that this country hasn’t treated you well. I’m sorry it has come to this. I’m sorry we have arrived here.
I stayed up late last night. On Facetime with my friend until the break of dawn. We were scared, holding onto each other through our iPhone 6s’s, during the 2016 Presidential election between Hilary Clinton and Donald Trump. I knocked out around 12, and woke up knowing that someone had taken the crown last night. I open my phone to see a message from my friend. “It’s official,” she sent at 2:35 AM. She didn’t even have to say who, I already knew. And I went on Twitter, and on Instagram, to see if I was the only one having a hard time breathing correctly. I cried. I still am. I imagined my brother(s), my sister(s), my mother(s), and my father(s) being gunned down with the piercing eyes of Trump’s radical supporters. I felt pained, perplexed, powerless. I told my mother the news. “This is God’s country, not his,” she said. I grew angry at her for not reacting with a fraction of my pain. I told her that Trump has the title. She hissed at me, “Don’t you dare give that man the power.” It was 6:00 AM, I was not in the conscious state for spiritual analyzation. Then she made me read a children’s book. Set during times of legal segregation, it was about a young black girl traveling “someplace special”. That someplace was the public library. In that moment, my tears were swept and I was ready to fight. With my knowledge and my pride and my faith and my hurt. I will not let my happiness, my life, be stolen by this man. No matter what position of power he is in. My mom was right. I cannot feed Trump with the power of my fear. I must keep moving. We all must.
I’ve seen reactions ranging from “I have never been more ashamed of this country,” to “I have never been more proud.” We are so very different, but here’s the thing, you’re all good people. I have faith in YOUR mind, heart and soul.
Take your time to process this transition. Gather your thoughts. Check your privilege. Watch your snap judgments. Hold your tongue. Listen to learn. Never stand for bigotry, but reexamine what tolerance means. Analyze why half of your neighbors voted differently than you. Strategize how to move forward. Look for potential positives. Be part of a constructive conversation. Preferably not on the internet. It’s almost happy hour, grab a friend and go get a beer. Make a new one while you’re at it. Let’s figure out how to make it together.
We exist. We exist. We exist. Repeat it with me. WE EXIST. People of color, lgbtq+, women, everyone who are feeling unsafe due to current events, you exist!! Despite what anyone says. We exist, we matter, and we will fight for what’s right!
Just like my dad told me the night of the election when I was frantically texting him from hundreds of miles away asking him for answers he told me “Let the dust settle. The sun will come up tomorrow.” I woke up the day after the election and the sun was there, the air was clear, the earth was still beautiful and people were still beautiful. I’ve cried a lot, my body has uncontrollably shook, and I can’t eat. But being consumed by fear should lead us to feel strong. I feel powerful about this election and I get the chills thinking about it. I watched thousands of people in my city of San Francisco join in solidarity last night in a beautiful protest of peace and love. We must not fall as humans. We are so strong and our voices are so strong. Our love is so strong and our compassion is so strong. He is not my president. And knowing the support I have with that decision with people in my city and across the entire country I feel okay and I feel supported and validated. We must never give up what we believe to be true because we are stronger together.
The thought of you to be brought into existence doesn’t make sense to be. Like other things in the world I do not support, I feel obligated to fight and advocate against you. I see you around sometimes and I allow you your constitutional rights to speak and follow up by my conditional rights to speak as well. It’s crazy, and yet it makes sense that you’re related to ignorance. Watch out because I am strong and I am stronger then my ancestors. My best friends are love peace and harmony. All of which have citizenship in this country.
You have a right to be sad, upset, or angry. Your voice wasn’t listened to the way you were told it would be.
Right now it feels like bricks are sitting on your chest and hands are wrapped around your throat trying to silence you. Don’t let them win.
Use this pain to fuel progress. Make art that sends a message of peace and love. Radiate positivity to the hateful ones around you who need it most. Turn this disappointment into something worthwhile.
Be proud of that you are standing up for love and light and positivity. Be proud of those who stand with you. Use this feeling for good because you are good and if enough people put love into the universe, then certainly it will repay it back.
Do I choose to hate the America that failed me, my family, and my friends—all people of minorities, or do I choose to spread love in a time when Americans need it the most? Do I choose to give up on the country where I was born and raised, or do I keep standing to be the light for those who succumbed to the darkness? One thing is clear right now: we need to have hope. Hope is what drives the human race forward. It’s such an encouraging emotion don’t you think? One that signifies that everything will be okay. Hope is knowing the sun is going to rise again. The flowers are going to bloom. Hope is what determines how you’re going to live. It secures the mindset that each day will be better than the last. This is the essence of the human race- we’re constantly moving, growing because of the little voices in our heads saying tomorrow will be better. And though this “tomorrow” may not actually be the next day, the next week, or even the next month, we have to keep moving with this tomorrow in mind. It may not seem like it is going to be okay, but we must embody hope to keep pushing forward. It is what we have always done, and what we will always continue doing.
A revolution of love and art is coming. Artists, musicians, writers, and people who want to be heard, let this be the time to express yourself and create as much as you can. Let every emotion out on paper, bad and good, angry and confused, hopeful or or hopeless, and share it with the world. Tell people how you feel. Don’t fear judgment. Let your opinion be heard. Don’t be afraid to shove it down people’s throats. You have the power to make a change. Never give up fighting for what you believe in. Get ready for this revolution, because we are coming in together stronger than ever.
Disheartening results of this election has understandably and rightfully struck fear in many of our hearts. Not just because Trump won, or that the dream of the first woman president was muted. But because we saw our nation divide in front of our own eyes. I was not just with Hilary Clinton, I was with the people she represented. The people who believe in religious freedom, the harsh repercussions of climate change, our immediate enactment to tend to the damages we have done to or planet, inclusiveness, subsidies, equal rights for people of all ethnicities/physicality/sexualities/sex’s of the like. Most importantly though, I’m with the people who don’t allow their privilege to skew their perceptions of someone else’s all too real reality. There are people who are afraid of Donald Trump’s agenda because they feel excluded and shamed for who they are. And it’s those people who I’m with today. Waking up this morning, possibly due to our astoundingly abundant access to social media and news, I think we all felt the eeriness in the air- the wonder of what is to come? My education that I have been so gratefully given the opportunity to obtain, has taught me to make the personal political. So although we may be feeling distant from one another now, in our separate homes reading articles and sharing social media posts in disbelief, don’t be fooled. We are in a position now to finally band together, unite for something we all agree on, which is love. Act of love today. Although it may seem difficult, today is when we need it most. And for the people who support Donald Trump, when you realize this is an exclusive administration working under classism and find yourself at the short end of the stick, we will accept you too. This is tactful distraction and alienation- let’s rise above and display the fact that love will always trump hate.
I’m going to keep going. I’m going to create and love and make and hope. I won’t let any amount of fear try to dim my future and the future of other marginalized youth. I won’t let hatred take away my faith that there are good things in the world, awaiting us, for us. We are here, we never left. We are big and bright and strong. We keep going despite it all. Despite it all,I’m going to stay soft & stay here to initiate the change. I’m here with you.
There is always room for grace. No matter how filled with hate the world may seem, there is always enough space on this earth for love, unexpected beauty, senseless laughter, and kindness. Amidst the ruckus in our government, on the street, and inside of our hearts, we must be in a United State of being. The beauty of America lies in her people; the diversity found in our beliefs, opinions, values, stories, languages, cultures, ethnicities, and families. The beauty of America is that we may not, will not, and cannot agree on everything, but we can choose to respect each other as fellow citizens and human beings. The beauty of America is that we can recognize our differences, privileges, and even biases, but choose to honor equality, freedom, and liberty over discrimination, violence, and prejudice. The beauty of America is that she is given time to heal from wounds so deeply felt and acutely painful, but the only way for her to heal is through incredible softness, understanding, and compassion. In this time of opposition, we must be allies to one another. In this time of division, we must hold each other. When all these things happen, hope abounds.
I’m not American, but me as the rest of the world followed this election with a lot of attention, because if the USA coughs the rest of the world gets the flu. Since I was a kid I looked up to this country, for me was the land of dream where everyone can reach their full potential. I’m born and raised in Italy and I know very well what it means to have someone in charged that doesn’t represent your beliefs, but this made me stronger, it never stopped me from thinking and fighting for what I thinks is good. And this shouldn’t stop you either from raising your voice. Keep sharing positivity and compassion because that’s what we need right now, fight hate with love. Always.
I thought “This is such a set back. Literally a four year set back. For women, for POC, for the LGBTQ community. A set back for feminism and the normality of feminism I felt was coming.” My sister said, “But this does not now mean hate is acceptable in America.” You remind that to your little sisters, your daughters, to your nieces… we won’t give in. Do not give in to the normality of “grabbing a woman by her pussy” without consent. Do not give in to normality of racial slurs that a lot of white boys will think it’s ok to make, laughing it off wearing that bright red hat. Do not give in those who may have just voted for him because of economics or because they just wanted a republican president… because the things that man said was real, how he behaved was real, and the normality of hate he symbolizes is real AND HE STILL WON. Scared I am, but I try not turn to hate or resentment for friends or family in this time. I will keep believing in what I always have. I will stand for equal treatment of women & POC & for our LGBTQ community. Wishing for love and peace for all. Lets grow together.
On 11/8 I woke up in happy tears – I was beyond confident that the US was about to elect its first female president. I was sure that we would destroy Trump and I was high off of the feeling.
Over the months leading up to the election, I had always been surrounded by like- minded leftist individuals. Not only did I grow up in a loving, mixed Afro-Caribbean- white American home, I attend one of the most liberal schools on the east coast. The small city that I live in is consistently listed as one of the “hippiest” towns in the US. But I should’ve known that it was my environment that made me feel safe and hopeful for the future of democracy.
But as the day progressed, Hillary’s chances seemed to digress. The accepting, open, and loving country that I thought I knew proved to be one plagued with hate. After staying up until 2am watching the polls, I felt sick to my stomach, reminded that our future president advocates for the destruction of the ‘other’.
On 11/9 I woke up feeling heavy, again in tears. My roommate’s parents were probably the biggest Hillary supporters as two married women. Leah (my roommate), after hearing the official announcement of Trump’s victory, said “our future president doesn’t think either of our parents should be married”.
Trump loves hate, but love trumps hate.
All of the tears streaming down the faces of the students I walk by, your hearts are so big and full of compassion that your tear ducts fill and empty at the sight of human indecency.
All of the professors who enter lecture halls with heavy hearts and bigger cups of coffee, your footsteps are so heavy and your words are so reluctant because your world has been shaken.. and even more so for the young people you teach on a daily basis.
The candlelight vigils, the protests, the safe spaces, the free yoga classes, the welcoming counseling sessions, the Facebook groups full of progressive action and positive affirmation; never forget that these are tools created out of a space of love. A space of acceptance. A space of compassion, made by people with big hearts, decent human beings- they exist.
We the People of university campuses were already producing the world’s changemakers, the scientists, the artists. We will continue to Rise. We will never, ever settle.
I’m not living in America, but the presidential election has shaken us all across the planet. To all Americans that did not want Trump to become president, I want you to know that we stand by you, we are all in unity – forget about borders, oceans, mountains dividing us. In the midst of all this hatred, we can rise above. We can all see above the suffocating fog of negativity, and see that we can all make a change. Being filled with energy that can be poured into passion, love, positivity – it drives us to destinations we never thought reachable. We are the youth of today, and we will continue to love greater than anyone else, to not stop until our voices are heard, to stand up for what we believe in. Please know that you are never alone, there are millions of us with you.