We are living, in this moment and in this country, at the precipice of substantial change. I know this to be true because of the impassioned way people are talking about the election.
On both sides.
I see it in the hope of the Trump supporters. I see it in the fear of Clinton supporters. I see it in the anger of Johnson, Stein and Sanders supporters.
I see it as undocumented immigrants cry out in fear, anger and uncertainty as they now live with the results of an election they were not allowed to vote in. I see it as the working classes pray that their economic salvation will be brought unto them by a political outsider.
And most of all, I feel this change coming. I feel the looming sense of change in the air, the electric sense of urgency that presents itself in the form of protests and hate crimes.
And ultimately, I feel fear. I feel the anxiety, the fear and the doubt as I see the people I love terrified because they are or they know someone who, if Trump follows through with his promises, might be deported. I feel it as women wonder whether they might lose the right to control their own bodies. I feel it as racial and ethnic minorities whose safety and well-being is at risk just from being in public. I feel it personally as I wonder if, as a gay man, I will have the right to get married in a few years.
Yet, this fear I feel is understated by a fragile sense of hope.
A hope which could stem from my privilege as a white man, yet hope nonetheless.
I have hope because I believe that we have the power to come together and guide the oncoming forces of change.
To make certain that this change is good, made in the name of love, not hate. Because no matter how legitimate, hate and anger breed nothing but malice, bring manipulative demagogues to power and tear people apart.
We have seen a similar form of hate in times of change. We saw it during the Civil War as hate fought to keep slavery. We saw it during World War II in the form of Japanese internment camps. We saw it in the protests to women’s suffrage, and we saw it, most notably, during the Civil Rights era as police brutally attacked black protestors.
In response to that disgusting hate and the hate that currently threatens us, now is the time to come together. We must set aside our most fervent ideologies, empower ourselves with our strongest emotions and bear witness to our shared humanity — uniting around it for good. For love.
Change is coming.