PLEASE NOTE: I didn’t edit this. It’s late and honestly, I keep flipping between wanting to cry and not cry. Not to mention, my left eye hurts for some odd reason, so that isn’t helping either.

October had been an extremely intense month for me, leaving me worn out and confused on how to go about relaxing. This election, the one here in the USA, has left me even more worn out than before. I feel such a large range of emotions — confused, conflicted, upset, sad, depressed, angry, scared, afraid, fearful, numb, not numb, stressed, cold, determined, happy, uncertain, hesitant, horrible, awful, sick…mostly not good.

It’s difficult for me to know where to start: the fear I am having? why I think Trump represents America perfectly? why I didn’t vote for Trump? what my opinion is on this whole thing? why I truly believe America has been played, although I am not sure for what purpose? who I voted for? why I think all the hate needs to stop? what we should do instead? So many places to begin.

I guess I’ll start with that I was absolutely for Bernie Sanders. When researching candidates, I agreed with 99% (literally all but one thing, related to free trade) with him. With Trump, I disagreed with nearly all of him (literally, the only thing I even remember agreeing with him on was free trade…). I also found Trump, while definitely an enticing rambler, he was just that — a rambler. There was nothing about Trump that appealed to me — his slogan was laughable to me, I didn’t agree with the majourity of what he stood for, even ignoring all the teeter-totter of prejudice/trying not to be prejudice crap.

When the primaries came around, I switched from Independent to Democrat specifically to vote for Bernie…despite that I already knew he wasn’t going to win. I’m not sure if SUPER EARLY ON, it was obvious, since I wasn’t paying much attention, but when the democratic nominees came down to Bernie V.S. Hillary, I could already see that Hillary was the politicians’ choice. Bernie was not. Bernie was going to lose. He already had lost, a long time ago. No matter how many people loved him, he was not loved by those in power, and lost. Hillary was chosen and the people who would have voted for Bernie scattered — some went to Hillary, some went to Trump, and some went 3rd party. It does seem like a majourity of the votes had to do with hating one or the other or both, although that may simply be a perception.

I watched as the support for Hillary started to roll in on my Facebook newsfeed and people talking about voting for her…but I already knew she was not going to be president. She was far behind. I couldn’t and can’t really explain why. I am well aware she won the popular vote this election. I knew she still lost.

That is why it occurred to me the day after the election: America has been played. This election was specifically set up to LET TRUMP WIN. It’s easy to point fingers at the 3rd party voters, the Trump voters, the DNC for not choosing Bernie, and so many others, but it is a pointless fight — in all honesty, I am not sure if Bernie would have even won at this point, but my mind is currently fairly pessimistic.

Trump played on the emotions of specific groups of people, a very specific group of people who are the majourity (although some people who are minorities voted for him as well). Similar to Obama’s original election year, people became inspired and hopeful to “make America great again” (whatever that means). Bernie also struck cords as well, but no —he couldn’t be chosen because Trump had to win. A non-politician wanting to “fix” the country, running for president. What a nice story. I truly do believe that Hillary was chosen ultimately to lose against Trump. I suppose I can’t be too sure if it was just blindness on DNC’s part or no —seriously, conspiracy theory going on here that she was purposely chosen for Trump to win.

I know people are upset Hillary didn’t win. People are afraid and so am I. I know she won the popular vote, but the electoral college (or is it collage?) picked Trump. I have watched people point blame in all directions, as I said earlier. I’m part of the group who is being pointed fingers at: I personally voted Jill Stein with an all Democrat backing. For my vote to at least count in sort of way, I went with her because she aligned with the majourity of what I want to see done for this country and I personally do not vote in fear or out of hatred. I am in a state where Hillary DID win; if I was in a swing state, maybe I would have voted different, but perhaps not.

“KELLY, YOU COST US THE ELECTION DESPITE YOUR STATE PICKED HILLARY!!!!” you may want to say. If I was simply going to go with the person who supposedly would have a “chance of winning,” Trump is the only person. Hillary NEVER STOOD A CHANCE. I know, I know — you want to start shouting “IF ONLY THE 3RD PARTY VOTERS WEREN’T BEING STUBBORN” (which means you assume they would have voted for Hillary; Trump still would have one even if no one voted 3rd party. The more conservative of the 3rd parties most likely would have gone to Trump, which is a significant number and he still would have been higher. TRUMP STILL WOULD WIN.)

You can disagree with me all you want. This is just a personal observation — I have no proof other than what I am seeing, which is simply just a perception and could very well be inaccurate, so take what I say as a grain of salt.

I never wanted Trump to be president. I still don’t want him to be president. I am SCARED of him, and even more so, his VP. As I said, I do not vote in fear and my vote is not wasted; if we’re gonna go with that rather silly “a vote for 3rd party is a vote for the enemy” idea, I do believe that a vote for Hillary was still a vote for Trump. Because he was going to win anyway. (Yes, I understand 3rd party has a slim chance of winning, but that could literally change at any moment; I vote for those who are closest to what I want for the country. So, if a 3rd party candidate is closer to what I want, I go with them.)

I’ll admit, I am not scared for myself. I understand that I am perceived as a white, female-bodied, cisgender person who is a bit masculine and sometimes guessed to be lesbian; while I personally am not cisgender (I identify as *genderfluid and most of the time I am either almost completely on the man-side or closer to the middle, but still on the man-side) and I label my sexual orientation as “pandemisexual,” meaning I don’t care about a person’s gender [role] or sex, but I do care about what kind of emotional connection I have with them because that is what makes me attracted to them in the first place. I know being overweight and a bit masculine, combined with being quiet, kind of shields me from some harassment I might receive otherwise.

However, I am a bit scared for my husband — he may be cisgender and heterosexual, but he is black. He also, occasionally, is suspected to be gay. Obviously, with the way people perceive me, once they found out he is married to me, the idea of him being gay will be cancelled out. However, him being black, sometimes mistaken to be Hispanic, puts him at risk.

While we live in a primarily liberal section of the USA (so, at least I think, the chances of harassment will be significantly lower), I know many do not. I am afraid for those who don’t. Those who live in states that already where trying to create anti-LGBT laws and have higher instances of prejudices in all forms, I greatly fear for them. I’m sure some of you won’t believe me simply because I voted 3rd party, but I am telling you, Trump was going to win even if nobody voted 3rd party and I am not going to vote out of fear. I’m afraid for my friends, acquaintances, loved ones, and strangers who fall into some sort of minority category. I fear for their safety. Even if Donald Trump actually lives up to his “I didn’t do that/I take that back,” his prejudice will still be seen as permission to spread hate towards groups of people.

I know some people find that ridiculous. I know some people dismiss the stuff coming out about that as clickbait. Even if it is clickbait, there is still the risk.

I ask those who voted for Trump, who have LGBT+ loved ones, who have loved ones of colour, who have loved ones of minority religions, who have loved ones who are in other minority categories (disabled, even women), please stand up to prejudice. Even if you didn’t vote for Trump, stand up.

I believe Trump wins in all scenarios. I believe this election was set up specifically for that. However, I must wonder why: is it to act as a barrier against what some may see as progress, but what others would perceive as ruining our country? is it to pretend to give the people what they have been looking for? is it a secret plot to actually further progress/ruining our country by giving us a president so many view as hateful, so we may all come together and push forward? I genuinely wonder because all scenarios seem plausible. My pessimism though is to imply a barrier against progress/what is ruining our country (again, depending on your view).

I know someone in my family who believes that despite all the hateful things Trump as said, he will change right before our eyes. I hope that ends up happening, although I doubt it. However, perhaps, America has a chance to further change itself.

Which ultimately brings me to do this statement: Trump is the perfect person to represent America. He is practically the embodiment of everything that is wrong with America: delusions of greatness, both in and out of the country. “Exercise” of the first amendment. Flip-flopping, contradictory. Hateful. Racist. Prejudice all around, whether intentional or not. Rich, but full of debt. A freakin’ celebrity and reality TV star. (the sarcastic part of me wants to congratulate us on living up to the stereotype of lovin’ our celebs and reality TV stars…) This is the America I have always seen, minus the occasional sparks of hopeful light. I’m not afraid to admit I do not love this country, never have and most likely never will (to be honest though, I could just never love a country; and no, family, I don’t love Japan either…loving their pop culture is different from loving the country). I have never seen it as great, potentially great. I’m not patriotic. I live here though, I don’t really know where else to go, and I don’t consider killing myself an option because there’s too many awesome things I want to do and am doing to actually do something like that.

I think too that because Trump is the reflection of everything wrong with America, it’s why we must keep pushing forward. I do believe that there will be a long, uphill battle, but we WILL prevail. We can all stick together. I believe in us — do you?

I am sick of staying silent. I have stayed silent for so long because I do not feel like I know enough or I can respond fast enough. I love to take the time to flip things over in my head and give them time to process. I no longer want to stay silent. I want to have a voice.

You know too, I don’t want to point fingers at anybody.

I’m not going to insult or blame Trump supporters for voting for him, no matter what their reason, even if it was just that they hated Hillary.

I’m not going to insult or blame Hillary supporters for voting for her, not matter what their reason.

I’m not going to insult or blame the DNC for not choosing Bernie.

I’m not going to insult or blame anyone who voted 3rd party or for non-party (like the dead gorilla), no matter what their reason.

I really believe that the election played out exactly as planned. I believe people chose who they wanted to chose. I may be a huge range of emotions, mostly negative, but I do not want to blame anyone because that does absolutely nothing.

Donald Trump is our president starting January 20th, 2017. What are we going to do NOW to ensure we can keep moving forward towards a more loving world? (Unless you don’t want a more loving world, then…just keep doing what you are doing.) Coming together, standing up for each other, show the president-elect we want love, not hate. Let’s aim to make this world as safe as possible for EVERYONE. (I know nobody can ever be 100%, but getting closer would be great).

I know some people are writing to their representatives. Some are collecting names of organizations that can potentially help continue moving towards love. Others are drawing, writing, creating, to ultimately help spread love and lift people up.

My fear of what could potentially happen (what is going to happen my rights? what about the rights of all those I love and know who are non-white, non-heterosexual, and non-cisgender?) definitely overwhelms me — I have been dealing with chest pains for these past three days and going in and out of stress, regardless of what I have been trying to do. My mood may start high and have high points during the day, but I am very quickly brought down — sometimes scrolling through FB, other times just through a reminder that Trump and his conversion-camp-supporting VP are about to start (trying) to run this country.

I really hope the fears end up unfounded, but it’s hard not to be afraid. I even remind myself that it is only FOUR years, EIGHT YEARS MAX. (Okay, I’ll admit I am afraid of Trump attempting to remove the limited terms…but hopefully that doesn’t happen.) If we want changes to happen, if we are unhappy with the results, WE MUST START NOW.

Another thing too that is bothering me is the sarcasm people are having towards college-aged kids wanting to have a day off from school to mourn what happened to the country, calling them special snowflakes and whatnot. They are mourning. They are exhausted from being afraid. I am in the same boat — I want a day off (although that is not just due to the election, but a mixture of events; the election doesn’t help though). I want to be able to sit back and process what happened and what I can do.

You know, it was interesting. The day after the election, when I woke up, I felt empty. I already knew Trump won and I was not happy about that. Instead, I felt a warrior’s spirit deep inside of me, getting ready for the battle — no more silence. I feel more determined than ever to exercise my voice. Whether that be physically vocal or through one of my creative works, I WILL BE HEARD. I’m done with being silent. DONE.

I hope that with what happened, people are inspired to speak out of love, not hate. I know hate and fear has been a large influence, but it genuinely needs to stop and we MUST think of how we move forward WITH LOVE.

It’s also a nice reminder too that, despite feeling like we may potentially go backwards with Trump, most of the country is still rather progressive. That didn’t change. Hopefully, if changes DO come, it will only be to break down barriers and bring people closer together…in love.

I am afraid. Yet, I am hopefully. Not for what Trump can do for America, but for what America can do for America.