It’s been about a week, and I’m still processing. Here are some thoughts as of lately:
- I was shocked by Donald Trump’s victory. I did not see it coming, and was assuring friends up until Election Day that there was no way this could happen. I hardly took him seriously the entire time. This is problematic. People of color have been telling us this is the country they live in for years. They have been saying Donald Trump has plenty of support, and could very well win. But because I don’t experience racism, I largely wrote this off. For this I am embarrassed and ashamed.
- I have work to do. So much work. And while I’d like to believe I was committed to anti-racist work before, I know a lot of it was empty. I am re-committing myself to not only showing up, but to stop avoiding difficult conversations with the people in my life, especially those who are like-minded, also consider themselves liberal and yet still perpetuate white supremacy. I’m hoping to tap into some great resources (like this book and this one) to help me develop effective communication skills.
- There were some victories in Kansas — the supreme court justices remain and the democrats picked up twelve seats in the house and one seat in the senate. There is still a conservative majority, but I’m hanging on to the small gains made and am trying to remain hopeful.
- This is not the time to retreat into white safety and security. This is not the time to shrug and tell ourselves “it’s just four years,” and that we have been through worse. This is detrimental and dangerous to many many people, and we need to be prepared to fight for every inch. Do not just post about it on Facebook. Call your elected officials. Show up to meetings and protests. This is as much a demand for me as it is for anyone reading this.
- I’ve spent much of this year feeling numb. I was swallowed by depression and anxiety and the overwhelming weight of becoming a mother. Now, more than ever, for my son if nothing else, I will stand up. Always.
- Read. Learn. Check your sources. Ask questions. Sit in discomfort. Take a deep breath before responding to someone who thinks differently than you. Do your best until you know better, and then do better. We will never be done learning and growing.
Peace and love. <3