I know that I tend to stay away from politics, but I feel as though this is a much-needed letter to the world. I hope that you can find this in your heart to understand my stance and need to write this letter.
I know that times are crazy and many people are fearing for their lives, their rights, and their safety since this election. Many things have happened since Tuesday and the past seventy-two hours have been a blur.
I know for myself, I have been going through mix emotions, fears, and experiences. I am glad that I am writing this letter seventy-two hours instead of twenty-four hours after the election. I hope that the extra time will help me sit down, think, and reflect on the comings of our nation. To give me enough time to write down words of wisdom, instead of words of fear and hate. Most importantly, give me time to figure out the correct words to use so that all my ideas and emotions will come out as coherent and justified, not something you can easily roll your eyes and say “there’s another privilege female Millennial complaining.”
First off, I want to claim my right to this letter by stating that I DID participate in this election. I not only voted for my state’s proposition, and my city’s measures, I also voted for my state’s representatives and our future leader of this country. This process was not short for me. I spent over a week carefully making my decision. I have notes on the proposition as well as my pro’s and con’s lists for each one. I have made notes comparing each candidate and carefully selected one that I believed will best represent our country as a whole and help us move into a brighter future. I will admit that some decision were hard. The choice for who I will choose to be president was a hard one. And was not something I took lightly. My top two picks were not chosen because they were female, but because of their platform and the power that their party had in their voice.
I can tell you here that I almost went with Jill Stein. I loved her stances on the issues at hand and thought she would make an amazing president. However, there was another female candidate, Hillary Clinton, that I thought about too. One that was part of the party that I am in. Her stances were similar to Stein’s. Believing in equality and equal access was a huge issue for me, that I am glad that she supports. Health care was another issue for me. Like many Millennials, healthcare is expensive and Obama care and Covered California is my saving grace. It is the only way on how I can afford my asthma medication and to get great care when I need it. Stein’s stance was better in that she wanted to provide free healthcare for all, while Clinton wanted to make a few small improvements on the current program. Both candidates still promised me my medical and affordable access to my much-needed medication. Though in the end, I choose Clinton. Not because she was a part of my party, but because I feared the other strong candidate who showered the world with his hateful speeches and made fun on those who supported him because they were not his “ideal” perfect supporters. I was stuck between choosing a candidate who would have been amazing as president but has my voice not be heard, or have my voice be heard and pray that this candidate will deliver what she promise and to stop the hate and promote love and equality.
Stating that I am upset with the turnout of the election, is an understatement. When it was 8:21PM, pacific time, I made my facebook post on how terrified I was because Trump was winning the electoral college vote. Seeing that did terrify me because I feared what he was going to do to those that I work within Special Education. My stepmom made my dad call me at 9PM. This is a huge ordeal for me because my dad has a policy of not using his phone after 8PM. He was the one who calmed me down and stated that all is well. This is just a ploy with the media to keep our interest in this election. The worst case scenario, which is the best for the media, will be that neither candidate will get the 270 votes and congress will have to choose. Congress will, of course, choose Clinton. I went to bed with the plan of not going back on social media and a prayer that all will be right in the world. When I found out the next morning that Trump won, I was numb. My biggest fear had been realized. At that point of time, my thoughts were “now what”, and “how can I keep my student safe and alive for the next year and a half?” And of course I had my hopeful voice of Trump is not inaugurated until February, I have until then to make a decision.
I hate to tell you that my first twenty-four hours was focused on being able to breathe and to not having a panic attack. My thoughts were on how my student is going to save me from the dark depths of my mind, and bring her bright warm, happy smiles and laughter to cheer us all up. To my student, who shows me that love does exist in even the most horrific and dark times. I will also admit that I also took to reading. At the time I was reading Rick Riordan’s latest Magnus Chase book. I passed the section where we met Heimdall and the thought of how many selfies did he take with the current president to not realize that there is a problem down here. That book is amazing and funny, and definitely, something that the world needs to read right now to help us get into a brighter spirit.
Now comes the increasing problem of “what’s next?” Millions of Americans are upset with the results of the electoral college. Children are coming to school in fear and crying over what is going to become of them and their families. Most of these kids are legal citizens, fearing that they will be deported because they are the wrong color, they are not white, or worse, the wrong religion, not Christian. Some of these kids fear their own health. Fear that these programs that help get them medical treatments and medicine that they need will go away. Teenagers walked out of their classrooms in protest on the results and insisted on the need for equality and love, refusing to accept the outcome knowing the amount of cleanup that will happen in the future.The school that I am working for, has issued counseling to all students since they are now on the level of stress and fear equivalent to those who have PTSD because of this election. Schools have issued decrees on students not talking about politics in fear of everyone safety. And yet in my corner of the education world, our classroom is spreading love to everyone. We are playing Uno, Skippo, and Sushi Go. We are playing Wii Dance Party 2014. The adults are talking about politics, while the students are loving us and helping us out in our everyday lives. My student smiles and spreads her cheer, while another make sure that all of our devices are charged. A couple of students play games with us, and others teach us in their own way to hold onto hope for a better tomorrow by just living each day to its full potential.
So what is my “next steps”? Sadly, it is not as impressive as those teenagers who did their peaceful protest. I talked with the adults, and those in charge of covered California, as well as read the plans for the coming years to come from our new elected president. Yeah, you read that correctly. While everyone was protesting, I was reading and talking. Yesterday, I called Covered California. I needed to know about my future medical payment in January. What will be my cost for medial in 2017? Luckily for me, it was not as big as a payment rise like I feared. But while I was on the phone with the most amazing rep, I asked him the biggest question burning in all of our minds: what will happen to Obama Care and Covered California? His reply was that they did have their meeting yesterday and decided to carry on like always. A lot of the policies that are up in place to create these programs will take a least a year or more to take down. 2017 prices will stay the same and funding will exist throughout the year. 2018 will be different, but by then we will have a better idea of what is going to happen. The programs will most likely be in place, but their prices will reflect the ideals of the new president and by 2019 the programs might disappear. Knowing this, gave me a bit of hope. I have at least two years to figure out how I am to get medical at a price that I can afford with my never-ending student loans.
However, that does not ease my fear of what will happen to my student and those like her. This is a man who is being compared to Hitler. A man who promised to ship people away because they are different and believe that they have no business being a part of our country. To get rid of the different and unique individual that make our country great. A man that the world has already seen a connection to concentration camps and deaths. What is one’s next step to this rising fear? Not just for our country but for the world.
For me, it is to breathe. We cannot make much of a difference if we do not breath. Hatred and hurting other and destroying their property is not a good. Your voice might be strong that way, but your message will not be clear. By spreading hate, your message will always be the opposite of what you want a say. We as a country need to sit and breath. To find our inner peace and begin to pick and choose our fights. To become a collective in our decisions on what we want to see in the next four years. And to do that through peace and happiness, not hate. We need this chance to breath and to look at this problem in a new angle. How can we improve the system?
For starters, we need to stop picking fictional characters and dead animals as a better choice for president. Let us be real here. I know that no one really likes our “top two” choices. But choosing fictional characters and dead animals is not making much of a statement. It is not proving anything to your country or the world. If anything, it has proven to the world at how uneducated and beyond stupid we are as a country. If you do not like the two candidates provided for you, look at the other ones. There were other party candidates as well as our primary contenders that you could have chosen from. You were not stuck with those two candidates: Trump and Clinton. There was a total of FIVE people on the ballot for president. I really do not want to read the next ballot telling people to please pick LIVING and REAL people who have not served as our country’s president for more than two terms. (Let’s face it. Everyone around the world loves Obama and wants him back in office. Sorry Michelle.)
The another problem that I had with this election was the lack of coverage for ALL of the potential candidates. The world most only likely knew of the two because of what the media portrayed. They only showed the two candidates from the two most powerful political parties. Now I know some people believe in a two party system, but I do not. I don’t believe that you should be stuck with choosing the lesser of two evils to represent your voice. These parties have been created because people’s voices are not being heard. And this election proved it. How many people from other countries knew about Jill Stein, Gary Johnson, and Gloria Estela La Riva? Unless you have friends who supported these other candidates, most likely no. I can tell you for a fact, that the only reason why I knew more about Jill Stein and Gary Johnson was because I had friends who supported Jill Stein. I was never more upset in knowing that all our nominees will never participate in a debate together because of some weird issue that existed with money, polls, and politics. Never more did this election showed how little our voice matters. Unless we are with some big party, our voice will not be heard. If you are independent, your voice is on the list of being never being heard unless it is needed (which is most likely never).
If I could have one wish right now it would be a do-over. Not just this election, but the whole thing for the past two years. A do-over with the primaries, as well as the major election. When it comes time for the major election I want EVERYONE’S voices heard. I want ALL the candidates to be participating in the debates regardless of their polls, money, or whatever another excuse the media can come up with for not showing everyone. I want all of the world to know who is running for president. And the best part is that we can do this. Legally, Obama can serve as president for another two years. There is a clause in the presidential term that states that a person can serve as president for two terms or ten years. This was mainly in place leaving room for a vice president who becomes president to run for office twice. I know that it is a bit of a stretch, but it is doable and needed. But the reality is that no matter how much I wished for this to be, it will not happen. We are stuck with a man who promoted hate throughout his campaign. Who made fun of those who supported them just because they did not fit the status quo.
So my realistic dream is for us to continue to spread peace, love, and equality. To fight the good fight in keeping everyone’s rights, and to give rights to those who should have had them a long time ago. To continue to fight for much-needed programs, and ideas, that need to be around the United States and to do so without hate. To help our friends and neighbors feel welcome and loved, and to show the world that those who are a bit different are amazing. They are not useless. They are much-needed individuals who help brighten the world and change the world for the better. To show the world, that in order to move forward and to be competitive in the word market, we need the diversity and the uniqueness of everyones. Because what it comes down to, is that every voice matters and that every thought and idea can change the world for the better. It has the potential to make us a powerful collective and to help us excel and get ahead of the other countries that are better than us in freedom, equality, education, love, and peace.
For the world, that get to deal with the choice of the electoral college. I am sorry. I do hope that the next four years will not be as bad as what some have predicted. I hope that the next four years will show that we are a country capable of love and equality, not just hate. That the next four years will bode us in our favor, and we will not have to live in total fear. If anything were to happen, I am truly sorry.
Thank you for reading this.
Sincerely your friend,