I don't get political on my posts. I've explained my reasons why. I stand by them. But I owe it to myself and I owe it to you guys to say something about the election. It might be my first and only post, it might not be. We'll see how this week plays out since I've got a lot of NaNoWriMo catching up to do and surgery tomorrow.
So, we have a new president-elect.
Not the guy I would have picked.
His Vice President scares me.
His platform scares me.
This is my country, and I'll be damned if someone tells me that my loved ones or myself don't belong here.
There's going to be a lot of anger right now. I hear you guys. I'm with you guys. Don't let anyone invalidate your feelings of hurt, of fear, of sadness. Don't let anyone tone-police you. Don't let anyone tell you that your fears aren't important. I love each and everyone of you.
I understand the electoral college is a flawed institution, but I don't agree that it needs to be done away with entirely. What does need change? Gerrymandered districts.
I don't think Bernie Sanders was betrayed by the DNC. I voted for the man. I hope he stays on in the Senate and takes the momentum that carried him to the national awareness and steels the Senate democrats and the more left-leaning moderates. There are polls that show he would have come out ahead...but polls don't mean anything. The Cubs won a world series after being down 3-1. The Cavs were down 3-1 against the best team in NBA history in the Finals and won. Then you add that when Secretary Clinton won states, she won them in near-landslides. When Senator Sanders won states, it was by thinnest of margins. Historical ifs are fun to entertain, but right now I'm in a what now mode.
My feelings of betrayal come from that decisive part of the American people that felt so threatened by minorities that hey were happy electing a particular platform to power.
Now, what about third partiers? I think they did affect the election. Whether they did so at Nader levels, we'll get to see that once the dust really settles, but both sides will make the assumption that those third party votes would have gone to them instead of being left blank. Did they flip an election? Maybe.
But here's the thing:
That's who didn't vote.
If you were to take just 10% of those eligible voters and apply it to the loser in the last few decades and you get Presidents Romney, McCain, Kerry, Gore, Dole, and Dukakis. All the way up to the Reagan - Mondale election when Mondale would have needed 20% more to beat Reagan in 1984.
That needs to change.
I did see that Latinos voted overwhelmingly against one candidate's opinions and platform, and that gives me a lot of hope, and hope is something we've got to hang on tight right now. Hope that there is enough groundswell of support from Senate Democrats and moderate Republicans who understand how history will remember them. Hope that nothing gets done because nothing getting done is better than bad things being done.
For those of you being persecuted right now, you are not alone. Remember that this is your country, no matter what the bigots say. This is your home.
But there is hope. Hope in a new wave of politicians that are bringing much-needed diversity to the senate. Hope that senators Warren and Sanders continue to be important voices of the left in the senate and that they are joined by moderate Democrats and Republicans both.
My hope is that a lot of people are mobilizing right now to run for office, to volunteer in their communities, to help out. Change won't come from the top-down, it comes from the bottom and it sure as hell won't be easy, but it's going to have to come.
I have hope that all this anger and pain and fear is being used to create art and literature and music. Two quotes that I live and die by as a writer/artist:
"Every act of creation is first and foremost an act of destruction"
"Art comforts the disturbed and disturbs the comfortable"
Now I have even more of a duty to write, and I want you creative type people to join me. Make your voice heard. There are going to be a lot of scared people right now and they're going to need your voices to be lights. And let those lights be torches.
To paraphrase Otep: If they want to see you burn, show them you are living fire.
And if they try to bury you: