Just returned home from a long and emotional day at work. A day in which I gave energy – and all my energy – to others. I was willing to do this for my students, colleagues, and friends. I am working through the paralyzing feeling of panic, fear, and disgust. I am trying to work through the anger, even though it is so difficult. I have not eaten anything all day because the hunger is replaced with worry and fear. Reflecting on the conversations, hugs, and weeping from the day, there are certain things I am taking away:
- the most vulnerable populations of people are scared for their life. There have been suicides and panic attacks, triggers of mental health concerns. Please give these people space to feel and process. Never let anyone discount or discredit your feelings and take time to embrace each emotion.
- I am distraught by the discussion on “conversion therapy”. I wept with a student as she explained it. It is human abuse.
- the impacts of this election are so great, we do not even know what is ahead. Today, I talked with women in STEM, we discussed the impact of the election on rape culture and male power. When women move into the male-dominated workforce, they will face discrimination, sexual harassment among other verbal abuses. This is “the Trump” effect. We have condoned this behavior by remaining silent and not holding men accountable. To that, I fear for my women
- to the Trump supporters, I want to disengage from you, I want to remove you from my life. But this is not the correct action because, we have failed you as a society. To the non-college-educated white men that were his biggest supporters, we have failed you. First, someone failed to instill the love of learning and knowledge to you. Next, we failed to help you see the value and depth of diversity and working among the beautiful human landscape of America. I feel for you; you are angry and will never know happiness and contentment.
- I was raised in a rural Midwest town – a sundown town, in fact. To this community and others alike, we have failed you. We have failed to engage in you a National conversation of diversity and hope. We have failed to call out racism and microagressions for many years. I am a product of this environment and I never called out these atrocities during my childhood and adolescence and for that I am sorry.
- to the women supporting Trump, we have failed you as a community of support. We need you on this team and journey as women and sisters.
To my students of color, Muslim students, LGBTQA+ students, women, non able-bodied students, and those in vulnerable populations, I love you, fiercely. I am here and will work to fight for your rights.
I initially wanted to leave the country and flee to a land that aligns with my values and identity. This is not because my choice for President not being elected. This is about condoning and silently perpetuating hate in America. We have done this and this election has thrown fuel on the fire.
I promise to continually educate my students- and especially my rural students – on injustice and systems of oppression. Perhaps there is a bigger calling that I need to give back to rural America. This is not my America and not my President.