I cried last night as I often do in the face of great emotion. I am a crier and always have been. It is only when I am really angry that the tears pass and I become coldly focused, intensely rational, and very scary . This morning I am not crying. But it is not because I passed through the emotion to anger, but because I realize we have been given an opportunity. It’s true! Let me show you what I mean,
Jump in the Wayback Machine with me to yesterday. As many of you are, I am watching the returns. I had a strange feeling of unreality – not unlike the feeling I had when I first heard that the towers had fallen. I keep thinking “This can’t really be happening! I don’t live in a country of racist, bigoted, homophobic people!” And you know what, we don’t. I refuse to believe that the majority of people in America share the same beliefs as Donald Trump.
“But he got elected!” you say. True, but we have a flawed electoral system.
“But he’s now the president!” someone wails. False, not yet he isn’t.
“But the world is over as we know it!” True. But it always is.
Every day, the world is over as we know it. Yesterday is gone and there isn’t a Wayback Machine to give you a do-over. In fact, we shouldn’t ever get a do-over. Because it is only in the face of adversity that we find something to fight for – something worth our time and effort, our sweat and tears, our pain and suffering. The greater the adversity, the greater the opportunity to make a difference.
My friends are black and white, yellow and red, blue and green. They are straight, gay, bi, transgender, transsexual, married, divorced, separated, and single. My friends have 2 legs, 1 leg, no legs, and wheels. They speak, and sign, and stutter, and slur. They speak English, Spanish, French, German, Russian, Turkish, Arabic, and Gibberish. They are Roman Catholic, Jewish, Muslim, Wiccan, and Atheist. And we all live on the Island of Misfit Toys together. It’s warm and happy here. We are accepted, admired, and encouraged for our diversities.
But now the country has said they don’t like our being different. They want us to be the same. They want to keep out the elements that make us different – the very elements that blend us into a unique and beautiful country. Well, maybe we should say thank you! Thank you for the opportunity to show the world that we are not what our political outcome suggests. But see, here’s the thing – this is no different than it was yesterday or the day before or last year or years ago. It is only that it has been said out loud, at the top of people’s lungs. The fractured country that we live in has been brought out into the open. And in doing so, we have been given an opportunity to DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT! The first step in recovery is to admit you have a problem. It seems to me that the county stood up last night and said, “Hi, My name is The United States of America and I have a problem.”
The road to recovery requires getting help. Get involved in an organization that shares your beliefs. Find a way to start making a change. Look for an opportunity that might have previously been hidden. Go find something that makes you feel empowered. Trump may have been elected, but he has a long road ahead to prove he can make good on any of his campaign threats. You and I, however, have a golden opportunity to affect true change. Find a local organization and ask how you can get involved. For me, I might just cross off a bucket list item – getting arrested for civil disobedience. Does anyone care to join me?
Some Colorado organizations that are working for positive change (look for something similar where you live):
Please post in comments any of the organizations that you know are working for positive change. Let’s spread the word and share the resources.