To the members of the Electoral College of these United States,
I’ve never had experience writing to a group of people who hold so much influence in this great country.
On November 8th, 2016, I saw my country fail itself. It was a day I wanted to bury my head in the sand and act like I was in a terrible nightmare, because how could this be real? How did this great nation elect a politically inexperienced man into the most powerful political position in the world? It was a day I saw people of color, women, my LGBTQ brothers and sisters, Muslims, and those who have dreamed of coming out of poverty lose. What we lost wasn’t just an election. We lost parts of us, we lost faith in our nation, we lost reason; we couldn’t believe that a campaign that prided itself on bullying and ‘locker room talk’ actually won his seat in the Oval Office.
Let’s take character out of it. We elected a man, by the unpopular vote, with no experience in politics. He has never governed a city, a county, a state, but now he will lead our country. We demand our doctors obtain the proper education and experience in the medical field to heal our wounds. We demand our lawyers to know the Constitution forwards and backwards. We demand out teachers to have a love for learning that extends far beyond themselves in order to help aid us in education and to broaden our minds. Why aren’t we demanding the President of the United States to do the same? To be experienced in healing us. To be experienced in bringing justice. To be experienced in educating us. To be experienced enough to lead us.
Let’s take experience out of it. From the beginning of the presidential race, we all witnessed a campaign that thrived on a rhetoric rooted in hatred. We watched as we glamorized a bully and showed our country that being cruel and hateful can get you all the way to the top. We watched as he spewed racism by calling some of the undocumented immigrants in the Latino community rapists and criminals. We watched as he threatened to temporarily halt new immigration by Muslims, and that a great and mighty wall would surround us in his shadow of intolerance. We watched as he spewed sexism with deliberate attacks on his opponent’s gender or grabbing women by their genitals. We watched as he bragged about his celebrity status, which inherently gave him consent to assault a woman’s body when he chose to assault it. We watched as he chose a running mate who believes in an inhumane and proven ineffective practice such as gay conversion therapy. No amount of shocks can change how we are created or how we love.
No amount of fear will change the way we love. No amount of racism, sexism, homophobia, xenophobia, misogyny, or bigotry will change how I feel about this country. I admit that I was shaken. I admit that, for an instant, I turned my back on the people who turned their back on me. I gave up on the fight for progress and was ready to leave in the face of fear. I know that the answer isn’t to run away, but to stay and use my voice to manifest change. I will use my love to turn a country of freedoms with exceptions into one with freedoms and acceptance. I made a promise to be proactive and fight against the opposition that tests and strips away the rights of my friends and family because they lack privilege in their gender or in the color of their skin. We are all Americans. We all have the privilege to live in the greatest country in the world. We all have the privilege to become invested in each other, to learn from each other, and to celebrate each other. We are black and white. We are man and woman. We are gay and straight. We are Muslim and Christian. I intend on keeping my promise to fight, to love, to spread a message of hope, and to spread progress in any way that I can. I was defeated and afraid. The fear hasn’t gone away, but I am not going to allow myself to be defeated.
Do you want to take action? I do, too. I will stand with you. I will fight with you and for you. All I ask is that you be there for me, too. You have a very important decision to make. The world is looking to you set an example. Let’s show the world that we are stronger together. Let’s show what kind of country we are. Let’s show that bigotry is a grave offense and will not be tolerated. Let’s show our girls that they can fulfill their highest potential, because the glass ceiling that held them back has shattered into millions of pieces. Let’s show that when the majority of Americans share their voice, they are heard. Let’s show that we are America. The same America founded on constitutional freedoms and basic human rights provided to all of its people. We do not need to make America great again, because it never fell from greatness.