My Fellow Americans.
That sounds appropriate today, doesn’t it. Portentous. Let’s roll with this.
My Fellow Americans,
Today some of you celebrate. Some shake your heads. Some are afraid.
You are afraid that the person holding the highest office in our country has publicly said he will not stand for you. He has mocked you and your cause. He chooses to incite fear and division.
And around the country we hold our collective breath. What are we going to do?
As Glennon Doyle Melton would say, ‘Fear is not the boss of us. Love is the boss of us.’
The power of this country does not rest in the hands of one man, not even that man. We are the country. We are the immigrants and the children of children of immigrants. We hold different faiths – many times those faiths having more in common than not. We love differently, but the LOVE is the same love. Our skin looks different, but our hearts beat the same.
That thing you love, that you passionately defend? It did not go away. Yes, you hoped for a leader who would help support that cause, and it may not be the man elected.
Here is the real power, my friends. Its you. No great change ever happened in this country only because the president wanted it. We did it. The country fought a war with itself over the right for slaves to be free. Women fought to vote. Black Americans fought for equality. Individuals with disabilities fought to be included. LGBTQ individuals fought to marry. Fought for the love of the cause, the belief that it was necessary, and in truth, the love of this country. To make it the best version of itself.
Those were our voices. The voices of everyday Americans who decided they would not remain silent. They would not hope that 4 years from now a better leader would come. They didn’t limit themselves to the comment sections of internet posts (legitimately most of them never heard of the internet, but you know where I’m going).
They stood. They fought.
So fight. But fight fair. When we attack and degrade and vandalize, we become everything the opposing view claims we are. As Michelle Obama said, ‘When they go low, we go high.’
Fight fair. Fight with facts (real facts, not internet facts – do your homework). Calm, prepared, firm arguments are generally harder to dismiss than the blustering noise trying to drown you out. Fight in the right arena. Your battle is not in the comment section of a twitter feed. Its face to face, talking with people. Sharing your story, finding your fellows. Getting so much (correct) information out there that you overpower the lies.
That is the real America.
Decide what you won’t give up on. Then fight for it.
Its the American thing to do.