On Nov 8th, my family like so many American families, sat in front of our TV in disbelief as the election results rolled in and the unthinkable began to take form: Donald Trump would be the 45th President of the United States (regardless of Jill Stein’s efforts). My children looked at us with a new anxiety as both my wife and I had lost our poker faces and just stared with troubled looks when we realized that our fear had now become our children’s fear. It was time for us to stop being political commentators, resume our role as parents, and reassure our children the world would continue. The only problem is that I needed reassuring as well.
Trump – a man described by New Yorker legal journalist Jeffrey Toobin as “a serial liar, a shady businessman, a bigot and a self-proclaimed abuser of women”- is going to be our president. As dark as these days look ahead, I do wonder what to say to my friends, my coworkers, my family, and yes, my children. All of the people in my immediate circles are either women, immigrants, Jewish, Hispanic, or Black. All of them feel threatened in the New Trump World Order.
Where do we go from this point? Like anyone else, I have suffered setbacks before in my life, but nothing has ever made me question my future like the outcome of this election. Instead of being overwhelmed by the enormity of the damage our country faces come January, I have instead chosen to focus on the immediacy of our surroundings and the values that I still hold – the values that the Bay Area holds – that are still with us as uncertainty and the possibility of a repressive, right-wing government loom ahead.
Instead of falling into despair, I will count on the Bay Area to hold those values high, to wave them stronger, higher, and with more force than ever before. We will embrace any gender, ethnicity, religion or civil liberty threatened by a Trump administration and we will tell our children that this will not stand. The United States will need the Bay Area to fly its freak flag in 2017 more than ever before. So be ready Norcal, as your country will need all of you in the days to come.