At this point.. If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all. I understand the anger and frustration on both sides but at this point anything negative things you say has already been said. Write a letter, tear it up. Type and note a delete it if that is what you have to do to work through your feelings. This might be mine…
I am heartbroken. Not because my candidate did not win but because I’ve lost hope. I’ve spend the past decade trying to connect people here and abroad. To get them to see we have more values and concerns in common than we do different. I’ve spent my time rejecting negativity, always trying to understand where someone comes from and why they believe the things they believe.
For the past two days I’ve spoken with 80 students in my 4 different classes and fielded questions about our political system and explaining to them why their countrymen feel so differently. In my intro to business fashion class we talked about trade deals, how in order to gain more profits jobs went overseas. In my retailing class we talked about unskilled labor and the effects low income jobs have on families and communities. And in my Trend Analysis class we talked about generational wealth and how we give power to the rich by buying their products. We discuss endlessly about the cheap goods that come into this country and how easy it is to manipulate customers into consuming more. I’m always trying to plant the seeds for them to create their own businesses which will create products and jobs that are good for humankind.
During my classes I prop them up with hope. Its all going to be ok. You live in a part of the country that has jobs, education, disposable income, and endless opportunities to coalesce. But at some point the cracks of despair start to shown through. Why bother? Whats the point? Why am I wasting my breath? My bubble of positivity is broken. My am I spending my time trying to educate others that the items they buy will not bring them happiness? Why am I asking others to pick a cause and care deeply for it? I am a single women, with an education whom can do whatever she pleases. I should say fuck this and go stare into the water in Jamaica. I should go meditate in India. I should go buy a house in the suburbs and have some children that will love me unconditionally. I should stop welcoming others to share their problems with me but well just take care of me.
I judge my parents and their friends for bowing down to consumerism in the 80’s. So full of optimism and joy in the 70’s I did not understand why they gave it up to have children, jobs, and a mortgage in the suburbs. I’m starting to get it now. I may be the most powerful woman the world has ever seen, I control my reproduction, I choose my career, I’m influential within my community, and I have no master. I am confident, self assured, and do not place much value on what any man or woman thinks of me. I am my own person. With that freedom comes a sense of responsibility to help others, to take on their struggle and strain. That is why at this time I feel such pain and sadness. I want to bring people together, I want to create positive environments where we are learning and growing from each other but even my most positive friends have gone dark and ugly.
I blame facebook. Once upon a time your community, unconsciously most of the time, would set forth social norms and behaviors that would acceptable. Now each one of us has a voice, a platform to spew as much hatred without a second thought. There is no way to shun this person into conformity. If you do not like what someone has to say you can unfollow them or give them a frowny face. A conversation is impossible since a complex thought or subject has to be boiled down to just a few sentences.
So what next? I honestly want to drive down to those middle states and visit a church. I want to talk with some white women, who have not been to college, and are single mothers. I want to ask that old grandpa what it was like when the old Rubber Made factory was still in town. I want to understand their struggle and their strain. I want to give them hope that we have more in common than we do different.