Post-Election Grief.

I, along with so many others, am deeply grieved and horrified at last week’s election results that have positioned Trump to be the next president of the United States of America.

This. Is. Appalling. On so many levels – and it’s not something to just “get over” and “let go” quickly, now that the election is over. It is time to mourn and grieve.

And yes – then to move on, to action, to the continued work of fighting for justice and against the institutionalized sins of racism, sexism, Islamophobia, homophobia, xenophobia, and more, that are evidently (devastatingly) so pervasive throughout the very marrow of our nation.

But grief comes first; and grief is legitimate, and should be given its proper voice and place. And with grief, (hopefully also) repentance.

…I don’t even know what to begin to say to white evangelicals, especially, who thought it was remotely okay to cast their precious vote for Trump. I’m ashamed. And furious. And so, so sad. And even more saddened by the fact that the very demographic that most heavily voted for Trump – white, straight, evangelical Protestants living in rural areas – describes virtually everyone from my home and childhood background. Family, relatives, friends, whom I love very dearly. And I feel betrayed – for myself, as well as on behalf of our more vulnerable brothers and sisters living in this country, or in anyway effected by the policies of the U.S., who are less protected by white privilege and/or American citizenship.

I guess I would start by asking them, please, please not to ignore the very real grief and fear felt by so many Americans and neighbors as a result of this election – the campaign season, as well as the actual results.

LISTEN TO VOICES THAT ARE NOT YOUR OWN. And TRY to understand what has just happened in this deeply divided country, and what this speaks about our past and our present, and what it means for our future.

I would suggest this post as a good place to start: “Here’s Why We Grieve Today” by John Pavlovitz; an excerpt:

Trump imagined a very selective America; one that is largely white and straight and Christian, and the voting verified this. Donald Trump has never made any assertions otherwise. He ran a campaign of fear and exclusion and isolation—and that’s the vision of the world those who voted for him have endorsed.

Every horrible thing Donald Trump ever said about women or Muslims or people of color has now been validated.
Every profanity-laced press conference and every call to bully protestors and every ignorant diatribe has been endorsed.
Every piece of anti-LGBTQ legislation Mike Pence has championed has been signed-off on.

Half of our country has declared these things acceptable, noble, American. 

This is the disconnect and the source of our grief today. It isn’t a political defeat that we’re lamenting, it’s a defeat for Humanity.

I think one more reason why this election hurts so badly, is so painful, is because, for better or worse, many of us who are critical of many things about America DO have a deep-seated sense of nationalism and patriotism.

We LOVE thinking-dreaming-of this country as one that is truly The Land of the FREE and the Home of the Brave, and how it can be that place even more so. And we are deeply attached to this beautiful American Dream that our children’s lives can and will be better than our own – that the world we bring them into, give to them, and leave behind for them and with them in it, will be a better, more just, more peaceful world than the ones we ourselves have inherited and inhabit.

But, at least today, it feels a lot more like The Land of the White and the Home of the Afraid. Because Fear, more than any other contender, won the day this Election season. And Trump’s win feels like a waking American Nightmare that bodes ill for the future of our children, our nation, and our one shared world.

It’s not the end of the world; but it is a huge and legitimate cause for grief.


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