This is a guest post on Jeremy’s weekly column. The opinions are those of the guest writer and not those of The Good Men Project and not necessarily of the columnist.
Half of our country is having a collective post-election freak out and the other half is wondering if we’ve all lost our damn minds.
I get that. You see an election with a winner and a loser. And yes, politics is ugly. Not everyone gets the result they want. You’re looking at us with a mixture of confusion and concern. Trepidation. Wondering what happened to the pleasant person you exchanged niceties with. You’re not sure what to make of us.
This is what you make of us:
And that’s ok. It might make you uncomfortable, and that’s ok too. Get used to that feeling. Right now our country is not in a comfortable place.
You know why we’re mad, right?
It’s not because “our side” lost the election. Our anger has nothing to do with any “side.” Our anger is bipartisan, of no particular party. It is not based on allegiance.
We’re mad because America elected a man who is on record as bragging about sexually assaulting women, a man who has insulted women publicly, a man who spent eight years on what has been referred to as a racist witch hunt for a certificate of birth, a man who stoked the anger of rabid fans at his rallies, who has been accused of encouraging violence at his rallies, who encouraged and promoted anger at the journalists covering his rallies, who threatened to violate our First Amendment by suing the press, who has said he would require an entire religious group to register—harkening back to the days of yellow stars and ethnic cleansing, who has said he’d round up and deport 2-3 million undocumented workers, who called Mexicans rapists and murderers, who is reported of having troubling ties to Russia, who has praised the dangerous and fascist methods of Vladimir Putin, who has “hoped Russian intelligence services had successfully hacked Hillary Clinton’s email,” and encouraged them to publish whatever they may have stolen, a man whose every word seems to emulate the most vile, demagogic leaders our world has seen, who has encouraged more nukes in more countries, who lacked knowledge on how the Nuclear Triad worked, how NATO works and the most basic information on international affairs that any candidate should know before even entering the race, a man who has business interests that conflict with holding the office of POTUS, a man who has flirted with the growing white supremacist movement via tweets and dog whistles throughout his entire campaign, who appoints an alleged white nationalist/white supremacist to Chief White House Counsel, who appoints a notorious racist to Director of the NSA, a man who, according to historians and experts and respected international figures, appears to be following the fascist playbook step by step.
Our country of flag waving, freedom loving patriots just elected a man who has promised to do things that fly in the face of democracy, who represents everything our country has always stood against. A man who pimped out fear and suspicion, and the home of the brave bought it with a fist full of dollar bills.
So yeah, we’re pissed.
And that’s a good thing. Because you know what we do when we’re angry?
We’ve always fought.
We are the survivors of sexual assault, we are the minorities who’ve had to fight everyday against prejudice and being treated as less than, we are the LGBTQ youth who had to live life in the closet or face rejection and violence, we are the people who are called terrorists because of our religion, we are the thugs and the fags and the bitches and sluts.
And we know how to fight.
We’ve fought our whole lives. We’ve fought to be able to smile easily when our souls have been damaged, we’ve fought to not appear angry in a world that views our anger as caricature, we’ve fought to blend in, we’ve fought to feel safe when the world has shown us that it can be anything but.
We’ve fought our whole lives. And we are joined by others who have always fought for what’s moral and right. There’s a whole army of your fellow citizens who are fighting.
We are fighting to not allow white supremacy to take over our country.
We are fighting the complacency and apathy that is slowly allowing hate and racism to feel normal.
Fighting to not go backwards to an uglier time.
Fighting to keep this beautiful, flawed, fragile democracy intact.
We won’t stop fighting after Inauguration Day. We won’t stop fighting in six months or a year. We will be vigilant and loud and angry.
Yes,we will be angry. We will make you uncomfortable. We won’t go away and we won’t be polite or nice all the time. Niceness is a luxury and right now we can’t afford to worry about tempering our fury or watering it down for your consumption.
We won’t go down in history as the generation who allowed fascism to happen while we stared at our phones in numb indifference.
We will be known as the generation that beat back a racist regime.
We will be known as the generation who came together across policy lines and communities to collectively fight against hate.
We will not lie down and watch our brothers and sisters be rounded up or registered. We will not languish in apathy while normalization of atrocities and hate and racism seeps into our pliable and absorbent minds.
You don’t want to think about this, but you have to. You’re uneasy too. You know this isn’t normal. You know this is dangerous territory. You’re uneasy, you just haven’t named it yet.
The revolution will be not be televised. It won’t be on the 24 hour news channels. But it will be written about. It will be online. And it will be on the ground.
And we need you. We are asking for everyone to come together. We don’t need to know who you voted for. This isn’t about blame or redemption or regret. If you don’t like what you’re seeing, if you don’t want white supremacy to govern from the White House, if you don’t agree with racists in positions of power, if you are troubled by what’s happening, join us. Show up and stand up.
We will fight for you too, even if you treat us with scorn or blow off our concerns. Even if you continue to question our anger or try to silence us. We aren’t fighting for a party or a side. We’re fighting for all of us.
While the Alt-Right white supremacists raise their hands in Nazi salutes in celebration of the incoming administration, we are raising our fists to show solidarity for our brothers and sisters. We are reminding the masses that there’s enough to go around—that there is no cap on opportunity, that one person’s equality does not equal your oppression—and that taking away the rights of others won’t lead to prosperity or peace. It never has.
It. Never. Has.
Shake off your comfort. That blanket won’t keep you warm for long. Eventually these things we are angry about? They will come knocking on your door. That’s how these things work. We know this because history is littered with the shards of societies who let it happen. Get uncomfortable. Get angry.
Say NO to bigotry. Say NO to hate. State your opposition to allowing racism access to the West Wing. Become an active citizen. Contact your representatives and do it frequently.
It truly is time for us to come together.