I feel gutted, completely heartbroken. Last night I quietly cried myself to attempted-sleep, but self-preservation readied me for flight or fright. I clenched my jaw, balled up my fists and tried, unsuccessfully, not to focus on the bile bubbling up. I tried to relax into my husband’s warm embrace, which usually makes me feel safe, but my racing heart kept me in a hyper-vigilant state, my legs aching to run.
The week before, we joked about joining MapleMatch.com so that we could escape to Canada if the unthinkable horror happened. I kept telling him that since we were already married to each other, that solution wasn’t open to us.
I tried to relax the muscles in my neck, arms, and legs– tightening and then releasing, trying to invite sleep, but it was my jaw that wouldn’t unclench.
I looked at my sleeping husband and felt frustration. How could he so easily fall asleep?
Doesn’t he know the kind of danger a Trump victory brings? For any non-WASPy American? For women? There are three of them in our household? For non-Christians? There are three in our household who were not raised Christian. How about Latinx? Chinese? (remember how they started global warming) Gay? Serious illnesses (I.e., pre-existing conditions)? Yep, they’re part of our family too.
I am in shock that Trump’s propagandist campaign worked. He encouraged singling out minorities for blame, promising ethnic cleansing and modeling emotional and physical abuse of women, allowing rape culture to prevail. He wants to reallocate funds to advantage the wealthy, and control the media’s right to free speech. How could people vote for him for president?
Through tears, the world felt blurry. I imagined Trump’s smug orange face oozing arrogance in my mind’s eye, and I saw Hitler’s face superimposed over his, but knew I wasn’t seeing anything clearly. I quietly reached for my iPad, trying not to wake my husband. I looked up Mein Kampf, which I had read in high school. I found the following quotes from Hitler:
“If you tell a big enough lie and tell it frequently enough, it will be believed.”
“The victor will never be asked if HE told the truth.”
“When I think I’m right, nothing bothers me.”
“I am not a huge fan of Japan.”
“We can’t allow China to rape our country anymore.”
“The personification of the devil as the symbol of all evil assumes the living shape of the Jew.”
“When Mexico sends his people, they’re not sending their best. They’re bringing drugs, they’re bringing crime. They’re rapists.”
“The heaviest blow which ever struck humanity was Christianity.”
“The point is, you can never be too greedy.”
“Humanitarianism is the expression of stupidity and cowardice.”
“Sorry losers and haters, but my IQ is one of the highest.”
“I use emotion for the many and reserve reason for the few.”
“I think if this country gets any kinder or gentler, it’s literally going to cease to exist.”
“The great strength of the totalitarian state is that it forces those who fear it to imitate it.”
Actually only half were Hitler’s quotes. The rest were Trump’s.
My husband opened his eyes and pulled me closer. He said, “We’re not moving to Canada.”
I started pull away from him. After all, he didn’t have to worry about his reproductive rights—the government wouldn’t legislate how his penis, testicles, or semen production was utilized.
He probably would have been overlooked, by Hitler, as a Jew, with his blonde hair, blue eyes, and patrician nose.
Then he said, “We’re fighters, not runners. The majority of Americans did not vote for him. Hillary won the popular vote so we have the numbers on our side and we are stronger together. Hillary has never given up and nor will we. We are not going to allow Trump to corrupt our home and dampen our love, laughter or happiness. He will not take that away from us. We will keep his disease of hatred out of our lives. And we will help others do the same, especially those who are in Trump’s sights. It’s clear that we have to do more than just cast our votes and we will, but there is nothing we can do tonight. Tonight we’ve fallen. Tomorrow we get back up. So PLEASE go to sleep!” He looked liked a deflated balloon.
He was right. I snuggled back into his arms and pretended to sleep.