Dear Trump supporters — I need a hug today. America needs a hug today. And some reassurance. Can you help me out? You all seem to be a ball of positive energy, so maybe you can help me feel better.
Please tell me that in the next 4 years, my rights to make my own reproductive decisions will not be taken away from me. I like to know that if I need birth control, I can access it. I am verbally assaulted almost daily – whether I’m walking to work, or back from the grocery store, or in another town nearby. You just never know when some sexually aggressive man will feel like he has the right to verbally assault you and comment on those long legs, the way I walk, what I’d look like underneath him. You know, lewd comments. But hey, they’re just comments. Locker room talk. I’ve had men grab me while on public transportation. But hey, I’m sure they didn’t mean anything by it. What’s the big deal anyway? Please tell me this is not going to continue to get worse. It has already taken a toll on my mental health and exacerbated my anxiety. Please tell me that we stand for more than that. If you’re my friend, I know you do and I love you.
And you should know this about me: I live in Oakland California — and my group of friends, and colleagues, and peers is really diverse. Please tell me that my friends of other faiths, my Muslim and Jewish and Hindu friends will be okay. Please tell me that my Black friends and Latino/a friends will not be persecuted. What about my disabled friends? Will they be okay too? What about my friends in the LGBTQ community? They have gone through so much too. What should my roommate tell her middle school students (many are undocumented) about their place in this country and their well being. Will we protect them and their families, or will they be forced to leave?
Something else you should know about me – I have spent my career working in mission-driven organizations. I studied International Relations. The goal of my current organization is to help people (all people) live healthier lives through public health programs that are based on equity and social justice. The programs are for the public good – anti obesity work, anti violence work, girls leadership programs, solid public health research to make our communities healthier. Will we still receive a shred of government funding to support the communities we serve?
I can tell you this – dear friends of color, of other faiths, of marginalized communities – I love you all more today than ever before. My love for you will be louder than his hate and vile intolerance. My heart feels very full for you. I can’t sleep at night, with a Bible by my bedside, and rest easy unless I know you’re going to be okay.
Tell me what to do. Tell me how to help.
I just donated to: Planned Parenthood, Southern Poverty Law Center, the Public Health Institute, and the Young Center for Immigrant Children’s Rights.
Here’s a good list: http://jezebel.com/a-list-of-pro-women-pro-immigrant-pro-earth-anti-big-1788752078
With so much love (and a heavy heart),
P.S. – On the topic of feminism – since that continues to be an afterthought. Read my sister’s (extremely articulate!) piece in the Observer. She’s a smart cookie. And her heart is heavy today too.
Disclaimer: I work for the Public Health Institute and support their work. The views above are my own.