When I was twelve I transferred from a predominantly black/asian/latino middle school to a dominantly white school. I gravitated towards the black students and was routinely told that “I wanted to be black.” From an early age I was aware of the ignorance that came with living in a small town. I remember feeling so much bigger than the people around me because I considered myself above the racial prejudice. I remember my own mother telling me that white boys wouldn’t want to date me if I continued dating black boys. What she should have told me is “you don’t want to date anyone that harbors that kind of racism.” She meant well.
On Election day I spent hours in my bedroom floor, sobbing uncontrollably. I couldn’t understand why I felt so defeated when I was so sure I was about to witness the first woman to become President of the United States. When I woke up the following day, I felt so many things: devastation, shock, grief, and disgust. The more I thought about it, the more I realized those emotions were not just about the reality we are facing as a country, but more to do with waking up to my own ignorance.
I was so blinded by own ignorance that I truly believed we were better than this. I scrolled through my social media feeds that proudly declared we were all fighting for equality, social justice, and change for the oppressed. I didn’t take into consideration that I don’t associate with outwardly racist, bigoted, and misogynistic human beings. I didn’t take into consideration that there are millions of people just like the ones I encountered in that small town all over the country; people that see progressive liberal actions as threatening to their white supremacy.
I think at this point we can all recognize that there are millions of people advocating for white supremacy. Surely you can’t deny that the media paints the Black Lives Matter movement as a hate group for fighting for justice, but doesn’t bat an eye when the KKK hold victory rallies for Trump. It has been widely pointed out that equality for all feels like oppression for those who have always benefited from a systematically racist system. If you don’t believe that, I ask you to consider who founded this system: rich, white, slave owning men. For those of you that might not understand: women and people of color were left out of the foundation of this country, weird that we still abide by those men’s beliefs, right?
Maybe not as weird as the amount of white educated woman who chose their whiteness over their womanhood during this election. It makes me question how many women have normalized sexual predators. It makes me wonder how many women allow men like Donald Trump to “grab them by the pussy” because they don’t know their own worth or because they don’t know they have the power to stop it.
I mostly question people who justify their vote for Donald Trump because of their Christianity. Separation of Church and State is a real thing but lets pretend for a second it’s okay to govern a country based on a religion that everyone doesn’t subscribe to, lets pretend for a second we don’t live in a country where freedom of religion, including the right to reject religion is law. I challenge anyone to tell me how Donald Trump represents your Christian values? Or does Donald Trump make you feel better about your shortcomings? Did your vote for Donald Trump have more to do with justifying your own hatred and fear for people who don’t look like you or subscribe to the same lifestyle as you? Was your vote for Donald Trump just a vote for keeping women’s rights controlled? Was your vote a vote against a woman’s right to choose? Did voting for someone with no political experience make you feel better about not being awake to what’s actually happening in this country? Were you more comfortable voting for a sexual predator with no political experience because you felt uncomfortable voting for a woman overly qualified for the position? Do you believe that her questionable actions in politics were more dangerous than a man who routinely sinks businesses at the expense of the working class people? A man who has never fought for anyone but himself. A man who routinely rates a woman’s worth based on their appearance.
In the days following the election I found myself wanting desperately to apologize for white people; to apologize over and over and over again to the people who are already struggling, who are looking at four years of war raged against them, but I am smart enough to know they don’t need my apology, they need me to educate myself on their oppression. They need me to hold onto this feeling of being awake to my own ignorance, they need me to talk to other white people about racism, prejudice, hatred, and what white people can do to change the system that fundamentally oppresses people who are not white because it is not up to the oppressed. It is not up to people of color to carry our torch. It is not up to them to comfort white people. It is up to you, white America, to wake the fuck up. Wake the fuck up and do something. It’s okay to be angry. Anger is an appropriate response. It’s okay to be angry with your countrymen and women. However, it is not okay to do nothing with that anger. Educate yourself, make conscious decisions about the companies you support, donate your time and money to organizations fighting for freedom and for worthy causes. Don’t ignore the facts.
If you have time please donate any amount of money to Planned Parenthood in Mike Pences name. More info here!