I don’t know what to do with my rage. The reality of our country is sinking in. I had been in a state of shock for weeks after the election. I was in denial for months–I was in denial until the inauguration. Normally, I can use art to express the everything that builds up in my mind to the point my whole body is tense–to find some sense of peace. But I have artists block. I am blocked for the first time in my life. I don’t know how to use the one means I have to even begin to express this overwhelming everything in me.
I don’t know what to do yet. But in the meantime, I am going to fight with love. I am going to oppose racism, sexism, xenophobia, the spread of misinformation, hatred, and fear with daily acts of kindness. It isn’t much. I know that. But if I can use each day to be some force for good and kindness in this country that is breaking my heart every single day–then at least, I am being a weapon I can be proud of. It is a simple mission until I know what more I can do to create positive change.
I generally try not to mix politics and social media, as it tends to either be figuratively preaching to the choir, and unnecessarily incendiary since I do have many friends, acquaintances and clients who tend to be more conservative or identify themselves as Republican. I understand they generally don’t usually fault me for what they tend to view as my less desirable characteristics of being liberal, feminist, atheist, etc. and out of mutual respect I don’t want to define people I know as kind, caring, interesting humans solely based on their affiliation with an opposing political party or differing beliefs.
We are all different people who have been raised with different influences, convictions, religious expectations, socioeconomic backgrounds, etc. I do my best to respect this impact on people.
I make an effort to be compassionate and empathetic towards people even when I don’t personally share their thoughts and opinions. However, there does come a point, when that compassion shifts to a form of inadvertent support for something I don’t believe in.
Regardless of your political leanings, if you don’t see the long-term negative implications of current acts of this new administration–I don’t understand? I struggle to empathize with how people were able to support a xenophobic, racist, sexist, narcissist who promotes rape culture, hate, division of our countries citizens and blatantly lies? People who I care about, like, respect as humans voted for that man–and I struggle to understand how they could disassociate that obviously deplorable behavior, lack of ethics, and clear lack of respect for his own constituency to support very vague political platforms with little to no explanation regarding how to enact such preposed change?
I want to understand. I want to relate to these people I know are good people–but this part of my mind can’t fathom how you could look at this horrible man, and this is genuinely the best option to not only represent the American people, and lead my country? This is the man you want as an example to your sons? This is how you want your daughters to believe they deserve to be treated?
“When Mexico sends its people…They’re bringing drugs. They’re bring crime. They’re rapists… And some, I assume, are good people.”
“The beauty of me is that I’m very rich.”
“It’s freezing and snowing in New York – we need global warming!”
“I’ve said if Ivanka weren’t my daughter, perhaps I’d be dating her.”
“The point is, you can never be too greedy.”
“You know, it really doesn’t matter what the media write as long as you’ve got a young, and beautiful, piece of ass.”
“Grab them by the pussy. You can do anything.”
So–when an administration is trying to silence inconvenient opposing views, and pushing “alternative facts” onto the American people. I am not going to sit silently, patiently, and respectfully anymore. I might be sharing information to people who already know things are in trouble. I might loss friends, or art clients–and while this is not my intention, it is probably unavoidable. And, I even know, that in the face of evidence to the contrary, it tends to only further ingrain incorrect opinions–so ultimately, I won’t change an minds. But I am so tired of the sadness and rage living only in my mind. If you aren’t angry, you aren’t paying attention. If you aren’t sad, if you aren’t scared, then your cognitive dissidence has become a beautiful bubble of ignorance around you–and in a way, you are lucky to have that bliss–until, you don’t. Eventually, you will feel the effects of your choice.
I hope I’m wrong. But I doubt it.