I woke up the night after the election groaning. I tried to fall asleep before the horror set in, but it set in before I got the chance. What did this mean for my future? As a queer non-binary person would I experience more harassment? Would I not have access to the healthcare I so direly need? Would my fellow LGBTQA friends be safe? How could I protect my community? My immediate feelings were fear and anger.
Watching president Obama and Hillary talk about a “smooth transition of power” enraged me even more. Smooth, how the hell could this be smooth for any minority? This was outrageous. The democrats that had failed everyone with their candidate, the only candidate who probably couldn’t beat a monster like Trump were now saying to just, “give him a chance.” I would reward him the same chance he values my life: none at all. Donald Trump’s shock in light of the many hate crimes that were made in his name did not strike me as funny. We had elected a Cheeto as our president.
As the week continued another feeling set in: one of hope. Seeing the protests on the television, all the people who like myself would not accept this and would go down fighting made the fear subside just a little. The knowledge set in that: humans aren’t fixed; we’re evolving animals. There may be stagnant periods where progress seems impossible, when the fate of a country is left to war or leaders who determine whose lives are important, and whose aren’t, but the dissatisfaction of the people will always lead to change. This dissatisfaction that was being expressed in protests nation-wide would serve as a clear signal to those in power: this is unacceptable, and we will fight this, every step Donald Trump and his team takes, there will be determined working class people there to oppose him, and I will count myself among them. And I want to ask everyone that feels indecisive right now: what side of history do you want to be on?
Jade Alektra is a Chicago Literati contributing writer who lives in Aurora. She’s currently studying to be a filmmaker.