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The Carletonian

The Carletonian

Processing a Trump victory

<ir="ltr" id="docs-internal-guid-a1ac7776-545c-e2e0-d021-b59694b0dc4e">In my adult life, I almost never cry. I don’t cry when boys break up with me. I don’t cry when my friends hurt me. I don’t cry about everyday bruises and scrapes. But yesterday I cried more than I can ever remember. I cried out of shock; because Trump supporters were too ashamed to openly admit they were voting for him, our polls led me to believe his presidency was not a possibility. I cried because our president-elect carries the message that any minority does not belong in their own country. I cried because I now saw that our country does not believe women should hold a position of power. I cried because America now has a president who believes I am inferior simply due to my sex. I cried because he can gloat about sexual assault and still be elected. I cried about the possibility of us going through another extreme economic recession. I cried not only for myself, but also and perhaps more importantly for my friends who are now fearful to live in the country they love.

But most of all, I cried for my 91-year-old grandmother who has been waiting for almost a century to elect an exceptionally competent, well-qualified female president. My grandmother, who has served in the Minnesotan government herself and hangs a wooden portrait of JFK in her foyer, was once again let down by her fellow citizens. This may be her last chance to ever vote. And in the very first election I could vote in, that many of us could vote in, our country chose a racist, sexist bigot whom not only America, but the rest of the world fears. After the election, my grandmother sent me an email. She echoes the sentence she concocted during her years serving in Minnesota: “the voters are stupid, stupid, stupid. Trouble is, we all have to suffer along with them.” For the first time, I believed this pessimistic view to be completely true. We live in an exceptionally hateful and divided nation. But this is not over.

The email evoked more than a pessimistic message. Instead, my grandmother wrote “we just have to persevere.” And she is correct. There is no other option. If anything, this election awoke all of the political bones in my body. It lit a fire under my ass, so to speak, and now instead of hurt all that’s left is outrage. In this moment so many of us feel fear and disbelief. But this election has also exposed an American people, especially a young generation, committed to social change. A nation that believed wholeheartedly a woman could, and should, be president. And a nation that I know is outraged, but will continue to work together and combat Trump during every stage of his presidency. The jokes of leaving the country for Canada are futile. The best thing we can do is stay and fight. And not just talk about it, but do it. Be outrageously committed to your principles and do not waver. If anything, this campaign has taught us that passion and conviction often sway common sense.

People joke about our generation of Americans as being flighty, passive, and glued to our smartphones. But at the end of the day, we voted blue. We believed in equality and real change, not the change our president-elect patronizes. I hope we never relinquish those morals and this positive outlook. It is the right outlook, no matter what the results of this election state. I am currently abroad, but I am absolutely overwhelmed and excited by the responses of my fellow Carleton peers. I read your messages on social media and am proud to go to school with you. I am so grateful for your empathy and compassion for your friends and for people you do not even know. I am proud to be your age and to share these messages. I am proud that it is us who will be reversing the impacts of this administration and setting our country back on an encouraging, progressive path. I am proud that we will once again build an America we can be proud of. I know that my grandmother would revel in knowing that.

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