Last night, in my liberal complacency, I wrote a premature post congratulating Hillary Rodham Clinton for being the first woman president of the United States. I was so sure, the polls were sure, Saturday Night Live was sure; there was no way in hell this competent, qualified, hardworking public servant would lose to a brash bully who’s become the laughing stock of the world, and who’s never actually worked in politics before.
Egg on my face.
It was a devastating result. Even though I’m not American, I could feel the repercussions and the type of world that you’d chosen to live in. I was shocked about Brexit, and of course, that was gutting, but with Brexit it was somehow possible to blame the politicians and the campaigns and the lies. The general public, they’d just been played! Not our fault, not at all. This feels different; this feels like the American public have actively embraced racism and white supremacy; they’ve embraced homophobia and xenophobia. They’ve embraced isolationism and they’ve shunned empathy. Practically every ideal I hold close to me had been shunned.
Every now and then I go through an existential crisis about whether or not I’m actually a good person. Not funny or fierce or whatever but genuinely good. I’ve done a lot of work on myself and tried to be better and do better. And every now and then I tend to spiral into a bit of a depression about whether or not I’m a good person (including last week! The timing of this is election is honestly terrible.) Boshemia has helped, E & L and a whole bunch of other people have helped, but when bad people do well in the world, does it matter?
Sometimes life is hard. Then Donald Trump wins
Earlier today I was done. I was fed up of screaming human rights into a dark void filled with swastika’s, hate speech and Pepe. In a world where we tell children not to bully, not to be prejudiced and to be fair, we elect the biggest bully, bigot and cheater the US presidential election has ever seen. Instead of rewarding 30 years of hard work against piles and piles of adversity, we reward an orange demagogue who has lived his life through fraud, shortcuts and loopholes. I mean honestly what’s the point; the entire “liberal jew run,” media was telling us that this guy was bad news and yet somehow empty rhetoric and racism still won the general public over. It shouldn’t have been like this. It shouldn’t have even been this close. For the past five months or so, every single week has resulted in a new Trump scandal, from sexual assault, to fraud, to tax avoidance, to actually inciting violence.
The past eight years have been a beacon of progress. LGBTQ rights, women’s rights, healthcare, environmentalism, international conversations about systemic racism have begun. And yet. The KKK are happy. White Nationalists are happy. Reddit* is happy, and I can only assume that Russian Trolls are ecstatic. For anyone interested in social progress, today is a good day. As a complete and total reactionary, I was this close to giving up on Boshemia. I mean, what’s the point right?
“And to the millions of volunteers, community leaders, activists and union organizers…I want everybody coming out… and make sure your voices are heard going forward.””
-Hillary Rodham Clinton, [Concession Speech 2016]
Luckily I happened to put Hillary Clinton’s concession speech on. Thanks Hill-dog. Hillary Rodham spoke with grace and composure – the type of attributes we shouldn’t really expect to see in the president for the next four years. She was dignified and classy, and even though the world would have (admittedly probably not) forgiven her for breaking down a little bit, she continued to show the strength of female perseverance that she’s become a beacon for over the past thirty years.
In a world telling us to shut up and sit down, female perseverance is an honest to god virtue, and when the President Elect of America can make statements like “grab them by the pussy,” and still have the respect of the general public, we need female perseverance. We need racial and religious minorities, and members of the LGBTQ community, and women, and anyone who feels that Trumps ideals are not their ideals to stand up and persevere, we need. Politicians are supposed to be a representative of the community, and we can’t let the current politicians to think that these ideals are representative of the community. Write to your congressmen, support LGBTQ charities, support Black Lives Matter, support environmentalism, and vote in your local elections (for the love of god, vote in your local elections).
On Voting Day, huge crowds were drawn to the grave of famed American Suffragette Susan B Anthony to show pride that 116 years after her death and 96 years after (some) American Women were given the rights to vote. The vote might not have turned out the way we wanted it, but that doesn’t mean we’re going to stop fighting.
I for one welcome the new era of feminism that will grow from this crushing defeat. Keep fighting against the system that can elect a shameless sexual assaulter. Keep fighting against the system that so whole heartedly embraces white nationalism after eight years of a black president, and keep fighting that bit inside of you that wants to shun it all and give up.
And stay Nasty. Always stay Nasty.
*Thankfully not the Drag Race subreddit though. They cool.