If there ever was a time for Unity…

If there ever was a time for Unity…

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I started this year feeling incredibly passionate about the presidential race, more so than I ever had in the past. Jade and I aren’t really the go to a bustling rally or door to door campaigning type of people, but this year felt a little different. I personally started by supporting the candidate who I shared the most views with, that being Bernie Sanders. I’m a pretty far to the left liberal guy, so it wasn’t hard for me to back someone like him. I campaigned as much as I could online, talked with my friends, colleagues and family about his platform, and did what I could while dealing with one of the more complicated years of my life.

After Bernie’s concession in June, I felt like I needed to take a step back from politics and online campaigning. In the wake of the loss however, I realized that the fight was not over. I had a hard time wrapping my mind around backing a candidate like Hillary at first, whom I didn’t share as many political views as I did Bernie. But then after several conversations with peers and with Jade, it occurred to me that this election year wasn’t just about my need to be able to share all views with the Democratic candidate elect.

What I realized was that this year was about facing down and refusing the growing conservative opposition, which as time went on, revealed itself to be the representation of literally everything that is feeding the hate, ignorance and intolerance in this country. This year was about saying we the people, as a whole, as a community, refuse to embrace sexism, misogyny, xenophobia, bigotry, homophobia and hatred as an acceptable platform to run a campaign. This year was about saying that the most qualified candidate to be president in decades is a strong and capable woman, and the opposition is the representation of all that is wrong with, not just this country, but the world.

This year was about defeating Trump.

After that realization, I was ready to do my civic duty to not only vote to defeat the embodiment of all that is corrupt and deplorable, but to vote to send a message that we will not stand for hatred and division in our country. Jade and I both proudly cast our ballots, thinking that we were joining the nation in this mission for Good.

Last Tuesday night, November 8th, was one of those nights that was unbearable to even begin to think about watching the polls though. Too much was at steak and at that point, our stomachs in knots, exhaustion setting in before we knew anything. So we went to bed hoping, praying, for a better tomorrow. We awoke to the most earth shattering news we had ever witnessed. The monster had won…

In the wake of the report, feeling shocked, stunned, and in a haze, I realized that this was just the beginning. Not just the beginning of a reign of ignorance where civil liberties and true freedoms of the people of the nation have and actual chance to be stripped bare, but this is the beginning of an immense opportunity for Unity. What I realized at that moment is, that all of the ignorance, hatred and intolerance in this nation has been lurking in the shadows for so long without a face, sneaking and thwarting in the shadows. But now, now the beast has a face. Now there is an opportunity for all those who voted for justice and for human rights to unify against the forces that corrupt and separate us. Now is the time to look the beast in the eye and say, no, we will not accept you as our rightful leader because you do not represent our beliefs, morals and ethics.

If there is anyone I have fought back on in my life, that’s bullies. Trump is the embodiment of an ignorant Bully, caring little to not about the needs of a nation, feeding the people retort and misinformation, without any actual firm platform, and condoning hate and intolerance of between citizens and immigrants alike. A bully is not someone I want representing me or the people I love and care for. The fact that a known misogynsitic, racist and bigoted bully has been chosen for president over the most competent and qualified female candidate ever I think speaks volumes to where we are as a nation.

As days have passed since the so-called president elect was announced, we now see that the popular vote, the actual voice of the people, did in fact elect Hillary as the winner, meaning, there are more in this country who care for one another and reject hate than there are not. As other facts have come in, we see that of all qualified voters in this country, 46.6% of them did not vote at all. What’s worse, is that we saw statistics which said 53% of white women who voted, voted for Trump. This in my opinion is disheartening and I can’t help but to be disappointed. It not only means almost half of the country was so complacent and apathetic to the real impact of this election season that saying “whatever” and staying home was more important, but it also means that women are voting against their own interests. People were so caught up with their small lives, or with just being fearful, that they didn’t consider what it could mean for millions of women, immigrants, people of all races, anyone represented in the LGBT community, the environment, and even more incredibly important aspects of humanity if an ignorant, hateful bully won the election. It leaves a bitter taste in my mouth, but that doesn’t mean that I have lost faith in humanity.

The reasons this has happened have become apparent. We live in a broken system. We allow a outdated system like the Electoral College to preside over the true outcome of an election, where the popular candidate, the person the majority of people in this country actually voted for, is able to be cast out. This means, it doesn’t matter if more people actually want a particular candidate, if a candidate “wins” more states as a whole, then that candidate is the winner. The math doesn’t add up. This system makes no sense in the modern day for a myriad of reasons and it is the opposite of democracy. I do believe however this year is an opportunity for us all to come together as a country to tell the establishment to do away with this broken system which does not allow the people’s voice to be heard.

I also believe, in the wake of what many are calling a national tragedy (that which I cannot deny), we have the opportunity to come together as a nation, realize that we really do have the power to unify as one, regardless of minor petty differences of opinion, and reject the hate and ignorance that the new president elect symbolizes. This comes in the form of participating in the bigger conversation, whether online or in person; sharing all of our equal dissatisfaction and disappointment with the result of this election and collectively say that we cannot accept a bully to represent us.

In coming days, there is much we can do together as a community to fight back, peaceably, ensuring those who represent us in congress and in the senate use their influence to prevent our civil rights, freedoms and liberties from being stripped away. We have a powerful tool in the internet, and we can call, email, write a letter, or directly tweet a congressperson or a senator or a governor, and let them know that we want a unified country, where we do not cast out immigrants, as we all are descendants of immigrants looking to fulfill an American dream.

We want equality and equity, where our color, sexuality or gender does not determine our social status or rank. We want our government to work for us, providing us with safety in the form of social programs like nationalized healthcare and no cost higher education which will serve a greater good in protecting our well being and building a better infrastructure for the future. We want unity, not to be torn apart or to build walls between us and our neighbors. I know that this takes hard work, and I am not suggesting we look for a fight. I know that not everyone is going to agree on everything that is brought to the table in the fight for unity, and there will have to be compromise. But one thing we will refuse to compromise on is accepting hate and ignorance as the new normal. For more words of hope, I encourage you to read this letter from Bernie Sanders.

This past week has been filled with a lot of sorrow, tears, and even some anger. For me, I choose to see hope, and have faith that we all still have a chance to work together, following in the footsteps of those who have been fighting so hard for us like Hillary and Bernie, and come together to create social change in the face of the imminent threat that is the Trump presidency. We both are inspired by the promise of Unity, one of the reasons Jade created the

There are so many ways you can join us in this ongoing conversation of unity and we encourage you to join some of our recommended causes, sign petitions to change our broken system, or donate to one or more non-profits and organizations working to make a better tomorrow for all of us.

Sign a Petition:

Sign this Petition on Change.org to urge Electoral College voters to elect Hillary. (This is our one slim chance to remove Trump before he ever enters office).

Sign this MoveOn.Org petition to remove the Electoral College permanently. (This will allow the popular vote, or the actual majority of US citizens votes to ACTUALLY MATTER).

Sign this Change.Org petition to impeach Trump before he enters office

Donate to a Cause:

Donate any amount to Planned Parenthood

Donate to the Center for Reproductive Rights

Donate to #BlackLivesMatter

Donate to the ACLU

Donate to GLAAD

Join an Organization:

Join your local chapter of #BlackLivesMatter

Join the ACLU

Join the National Organization for Women

Get involved with GLAAD

 

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