The Upper Hand

| The Upper Hand: thoughts on elections results shared by popular lifestyle blogger, Design Mom

Vase of Flags | The Upper Hand: thoughts on elections results shared by popular lifestyle blogger, Design Mom

Well it’s night time now. Almost 8:00 in California. Almost 11:00 in New York. What a day. This is the first time I’ve logged on to Design Mom at all. It’s been rough. I let off steam today by making a lot of obnoxious comments on Facebook. Probably not the wisest decision.

I realize half of the country is celebrating today. Or maybe only a portion of that half. Though 50% of the country voted for Trump, a good chunk seemed reluctant to, and others won’t admit they did because of shame. So maybe 25% of the country is celebrating? I’m not sure. Such a strange election.

And then the other of half of the country is in mourning today. But again, maybe only a portion of that half. Because there were so many reluctant Clinton voters too.

Personally, I’m going through the prescribed stages of grief, with the hopeful goal of acceptance, then forward movement. I’m not there yet. I think it may take awhile.

I’m still processing everything. I think everybody is. I don’t know how I will feel tomorrow, but this is what is bothering me so much right now:

– The real fear so many people in our country are feeling because of this outcome. Our President-elect has made specific and/or veiled threats against Muslims, and Immigrants, and People of Color, and the LGBTQ community, and Jews, and Women and the Disabled. His supporters (no, not all his supporters) are already acting on those threats and many, many people feel unsafe and unwanted.

Some people think the fear is an over-reaction or simply people being dramatic. I think the fear is justified. Here are some links to show you why I think so:

If You Aren’t Aching.
Documented hate crime happening in response to Trump’s win.
America is a Country that Belongs to White People.
America Hates Women.
Kids in Utah (not sure if this one is public).

– Trump supporters are upset that they are being called racist and bigoted and sexist. They insist that they are not. Which is understandable. No one wants to be thought of as racist or bigoted or sexist, and very few people try to be those things. But remember, if we know about an evil thing, like a friend posting awful memes about Muslims on Facebook, or memes calling Michelle Obama a gorilla, and we don’t do or say anything to combat it, then that makes us complicit in the evil. That’s why Trump supporters — even when they aren’t KKK members themselves — are being called racist. Trump is racist. And if we are supporting him or being silent about him instead of fighting against him, then we are complicit in his racism. Which means we are racist.

Can Trump supporters do anything to change that perception? Sure. Actively fight racism. You could support Black Lives Matter, or other pro-minority groups, with time or money or your voice. You could seek out businesses owned by women of color and purchase from them. Those examples of hate I listed above? You could watch for them in real life and shut that stuff down. You could make your children aware of them so that they look out for behavior like this at school and make sure it’s called out.

Live in a mostly white area? Don’t know many people of color? Then you could make sure your social media feeds have plenty of non-white people in them. I mean it. Seek out Instagrammers of every race. Lots of them. Follow Black and Hispanic thought leaders on Facebook. If you haven’t done this already, you will be surprised to see how much it changes your point of view as you start to see the world from more perspectives.

– I’m seeing lots of calls from Trump supporters to come together, to get past the election, to do what we can to support our new President, so that he can do his best for the country, to work together as one. I get the desire behind these calls, and I know it comes from a good place. But if you’re tempted to post a kum-ba-yah, you may want to wait a bit. A) It’s probably too soon — the mourning and fear are real. Plus B) there’s a big dose of bitterness. Bitterness that’s not without justification.

Fans of Obama have watched people on the right say horribly demeaning things about his family for 8 years. And they’ve watched a Republican House and Senate that have been unwilling to work with Obama too — even going so far as to shut down the government, and refusing to consider his moderate suggestion for a Supreme Court nominee. So the calls to come together and stop making personal attacks? They don’t necessarily come across as very sincere. The thinking is something like, why should democrats play nice if republicans weren’t willing to?

But what if you really are sincere? And you really do want to see the country come together? Okay, then how about prefacing any lecture you’re about to make, by being honest about the awful things your side has done. (And yes, I know both sides have done awful things. But we have to take responsibility for our own actions — or our own sides actions — before we worry about what anyone else has done.)

– Sometimes it seems like it’s just people in cities that are fighting about political stuff. I’ve been thinking about that since watching the votes come in last night and then again after I read this article. I kept noticing it in my life today. The people I’m arguing with on Facebook? I know them. They live in cities. The Trump supporters I know personally? They live in cities. And I know from my analytics that most of the people who read here, both democrat and republican, live in cities. Do our citizens that don’t live in the city even feel like they are getting to participate in these online conversations, or is it too much of a different world?

If you are reading and you live in a rural area or a small town, do you feel like your voice is being heard? That the needs of your communities are being acknowledged?

In the book What Technology Wants, which I was obsessed with over the summer, it talked a lot about people all over the world streaming into cities because that’s where opportunity is. If that’s true, then what happens to a big country like ours, with big cities on the edges and no where else?

– You’ll notice I’m making requests of the Trump supporters, but not really of the Hillary supporters. Can you guess why?

It’s because Trump won.

If you supported Trump, then you are the winners. And with great power comes great responsibility. The winners have the upper hand, and they have to be the bigger man (or woman). Trump supporters have control of the House, the Senate and now the Presidency. Which means you’ve got work to do. And if you’re sincere about wanting the country to come together, then it’s up to you to make it happen. You’re in the lead. It’s on your shoulders.

How will you do it? I’m not sure. But I can bet it won’t involve reading Breitbart or the Drudge Report or watching Fox News or Ann Coulter or Savage Nation, or listening to Rush Limbaugh. That stuff is poison. It does more to keep the country divided than almost anything else I can think of. If you partake of it regularly, I urge you to try an experiment. Go cold turkey off of it for a few weeks. Use something like the BBC or any standard mainstream outlets (right or left leaning) like WSJ, Weekly Standard, Forbes, National Review, NY Times, Washington Post and NPR.

I know that “mainstream media” is often maligned as if they are evil, and certainly they are not perfect. But if most Americans were still getting our news only from these types of mainstream media outlets, I think we would be better off. I really think the extreme stuff is poison.

With the poisonous stuff gone, I can tell you I was amazed at how great our country is! I don’t actually hate a lot of the people I been told to hate! It turns out talking about gun reform doesn’t mean someone is trying to take our guns! And that both sides want to protect our religious freedoms! That there is no Gay Agenda or Feminist Agenda other than being treated like equal human beings! It will be a relief, I promise. At least it was for me.

I’ve done this myself in my own life, and it works. It really does. Less knots in my stomach about the world in general, and more likelihood that I can see the perspective of the other side. And yes, I know there are ultra-left news sources too, but they are not as plentiful or powerful as the ultra-conservative ones. They don’t compare. But by all means, if you encounter one, stay away. It’s not about avoiding different points of view, it’s about steering clear of the extreme stuff.

The extreme outlets are not going to encourage anyone to come together. They can only thrive with an enemy.

– Here are two happier things today. A little bit ago, as I was starting to sign off, I began to see some humor. Oh my. I was so relieved to crack a smile! I hope you are finding something to smile at too. And then, just now, as I was typing this, my lovely sis-in-law, Liz, dropped off a bag of Pear Jelly Bellys on my doorstep. They are my favorite. I haven’t eaten a thing all day, and they are bringing me joy. (Thank you, Liz!)

So that is some of what I’ve seen today. And I’m curious what you’ve seen from your internet perches (and real-life perches) as well. Fill me in. Do you agree with any of my thoughts? Or do I have it all wrong? How did you celebrate/grieve today? Are you finding it hard to be a gracious winner or gracious loser? What do your kids think about it? Are they fearful? Or feeling triumphant? Did they talk about it in school today? Oh. And if you haven’t quit me yet. I’m planning to get on Facebook Live tomorrow. Join me (and get more info on my silver hair!).

P.S. — Here in Oakland, students at most of the high schools staged walk outs today in protest of Trump. Reading about it, I was reminded I live in a very blue bubble. I mean I know that. I grew up in a very red bubble and can certainly see the difference. But I’m sure I forget sometimes. Here’s to bursting all of our bubbles.

412 thoughts on “The Upper Hand”

  1. Oh Gabrielle, I am so exhausted of this loooooong election process. I’m a Bernie voter, I have been disappointed for a long time now. But I tell you what, I voted for HRC in the general election anyway. I had to do it, to support all the other democrats in the nation, even though I could have chosen someone else in CA.
    But I’m exhausted. I’m exhausted because nothing is over, no time to rest. We have to keep our eyes open all the time now. Because sh_t is going to happen every day and we will have to make sure we check if it’s constitutional, legal, ethical, etc.
    We are pretty lucky here in California, but I am scared for the stability of the nation and of the world. There seems to be a wave of conservatism and even worse, hatred. It’s kind of scary. It’s the work ahead that overwhelms me. I hope we are all up to it.

  2. I’ve read a lot of ‘day after’ posts today, but yours was the first one that really resonated with me. Thank you, I really needed this.

  3. New Mexico is another blue bubble — especially Southern NM, where not just Dems but progressives scored big wins. We have turned our statehouse blue again, and our city councils have long been that way. El Paso, TX, also saw a lot of blue, and “they say” that El Paso politics are what Texas will eventually look like.

    But we are also a very diverse part of the country, and we cherish that. We’re an island of tolerance in between AZ and TX. We are frightened for life in Trumpistan and what it will mean for our friends and neighbors. I am fearful for my students. I don’t think our lives will get easier. We’re a poor part of a poor state: President Trump’s policies probably won’t do us any favors.

    To be honest, I am afraid that a quarter of the country just opted the rest of us out of the American democratic experiment. Trump has indicated he’s not a fan of constitutional processes. He will have control of all three branches of government and a cowed party. No one will stop him when he overreaches.

    1. Thank you for mentioning El Paso, TX, Andrea. I live right in El Paso, right on the U.S-Mexico border. We have always been very blue democrats.

    2. “He will have control of all three branches of government and a cowed party. No one will stop him when he overreaches.”

      I’ve heard completely opposite takes on this. Some people really feel that the different branches of government will check him, but I agree with you that I think the Republican Leaders seem too intimidated by Trump to stand up to him. If they didn’t stand up to him during the election, why would they now?

      1. I think the Republican leaders didn’t stand up to him during the election because many were up for reelection themselves, and the pro-Trump contingency was very visible. And they didn’t wan to be on Trump’s s**tlist if he won.

        Now that he’s in, they have to help him look good. They will use his lack of experience to push through whatever they couldn’t while a democrat was president. I don’t think they are cowed.

      2. The Republican Party was incredibly fractured during this Presidential Election. True, the Speaker of the House came around and there are others, too, but many Republican leaders refused to publicly endorse him. That list includes the two former Republican Presidents, who also did not vote for him. He won the Republican Primary fare and square. The party’s leaders’ hands were tied based on our democratic process.
        My first take on the data is that Trump took away a lot of the democrat’s white, male vote. I think Trump will continue to have plenty of adversity from his party going forward, for good reason. Not to mention some of his policy viewpoints are much farther left than those of his party.

  4. I am a conservative #nevertrump from the beginning. I agree with you on many points, with the exception of two things: both in 2008 and 2012 there was a lot of gloating, a lot of demands for everyone to unite behind president Obama. President Obama himself even said “I won, you lost” to a gathering of republican leaders discussing a stimulus package. Uniting the country isn’t just on the shoulders of those who voted for Trump. I really REALLY don’t like the guy (I voted for Hillary) but we can’t rely on other people to do the work for us. Rioting in the streets, damaging small businesses divides. I did turn off all conservative radio etc. 4 years ago when Romney lost. He was a good man who lost because of evangelical bigotry and I couldn’t bear to listen to anyone who said that he was the lesser of two evils. Amazingly, shortly after I started to think that Obama was a pretty good guy despite our differences. I thought it was the end of the world when he was first elected….that our economy would crash and we would be forced into socialism because the dems also won the house and the senate but we are still here. The world didn’t end. It’s not just on the shoulders of the victors. It can’t be if it’s ever going to work.

    Secondly, broad generalizations don’t help anyone. Really. I know a never trumped who gulped and voted for Trump because she is a single mother of
    4 and her family’s health insurance premiums increased 300% over the last two years and she can’t afford it anymore. In her mind she was between a rock and a hard place. I am previledged to have healthcare that I don’t have to worry about for the low cost of my husband deploying. We want to get out of the military but how in the world would we be able to insure our family? Another of my friends chose Trump over Hillary because she didn’t trust her to make sure that she will have the support she needs when she deploys. Hillary didn’t answer very many questions comparatively or address real concerns people had, like “will you dock military pay when they are away training like your husband did?” Or “will you give us the equipment we need or will we have to make do with sub par equipment like in the 90’s?” If those life and death concerns had been addressed satisfactorily then I know my friend would have chosen Hillary. Unfortunately we didn’t get those answers so a lot of people assumed that a lot of the things that happened under her husband would happen again. I know that isn’t fair to her, but we never had a chance to find out you know? Sometimes it really comes down to being able to afford to insure my family or making a disappointingly necessary statement with my vote that locker room talk isn’t just something that boys do, or
    that a wall is seriously the dumbest idea ever. I told my children the uncomfortable truths about each candidate….that Hillary broke some rules and didn’t really tell the truth about it, but that Donald was a bully. They just wanted to know who would be a good leader for their daddy, who would like Presodemt Obama reverently and carefully make the decision whether or not to send their Daddy to war yet again (he has deployed 4 times, and his fellow green berets are shouldering the burden of our conflicts. 6 died just last week).

    1. First of all: Green Beret? That’s hard core! Your husband deserves our sincere thanks.

      As far as economic reasons for voting Trump goes, I think they are the reasons that I can get the closest to understanding. Fear of loss of income is very real. We’re talking about feeding our families! Keeping a roof over their head!

      At the same time, I imagine you can understand why this reasoning falls flat for so many people. It’s like there’s an employee who is confronted by his boss. And the boss says: You have to make a choice between 2 things.

      One, I might fire you or lower your paycheck. You can’t predict it for sure. But I might.

      Or two, this Muslim women here standing next to me (she is a US citizen who lives down the street from you) will be threatened and harassed for at least the next 4 years. Her hijab will be grabbed off her head. She’ll be yelled and called awful names and told to leave the country. She’ll endure groping. She’ll be threatened with rape, or possibly raped. Her kids will endure similar harassments from their peers as well.

      Pick one of these two options.

      1. OR, “this Muslim woman here standing next to me” MIGHT be welcomed in to her community, volunteer at her kids preschool, take a yoga class on the mat next to me, be at the Girl Scout troop meeting next week, and/or be the physician on call next time my daughter has an ear infection. Perhaps I do live in a Midwestern bubble, but find myself surrounded DAILY by individuals of differing race, sexual orientation, economic backgrounds, and educational levels who are kind, loving, compassionate to each other, regardless of their differences. People here in my red state are generally speaking, good people.

        I appreciate the extremely respectful and thoughtful discussion you’ve begun here. I have spent the last hour at work absorbing it all, but did find the above “choices” slightly condescending. It implies that my husband’s vote for Trump (I elected not to cast a vote in the presidential race, but did vote for a largely Republican ticket otherwise) was his choosing MAYBE losing his job or paycheck over POSITIVELY a Muslim woman being threatened and harassed. My husband is a good man. He’s not racist or sexist. He works hard to support our family of 7. He’s educated, and kind, and thoughtful, and giving, and compassionate and has spent the last 8 years working 60 hours a week in the healthcare industry making less and less money each year because of Obamacare. We’ve lost money on our home, taken pay cuts, I’ve had to go back to work, and paid more and more in taxes and health care expenses each year. For us, its not a “maybe”, its a reality.

        I respectfully choose NOT to pick one of these two options, because I don’t think that they are the only two options. Hoping that those of us with differing opinions can work together despite our differences.

        1. Republicans refused to pass a package of fixes that would help make Obamacare better. They have wasted time trying to repeal Obamacare over 40 times (probably higher by now).

          Health insurance premiums through Obamacare are heavily subsidized. Most people pass less than $100 a month. That’s less than my family pays through my husband’s work. As for taxes, they’re the lowest they’ve been in decades. Trump’s tax plan will actually result in lower-income families and families with lots of children (like you) paying MORE taxes.

          Your husband makes less money at his healthcare job? Blame the executives paying themselves millions of dollars a year. Blame the doctors constantly upping their fees and advocating for treatments people don’t really need because they get to bill healthcare companies more for them.

          In other countries, doctors get paid much, much less and people become doctors to help others. Not to buy huge houses and take fancy vacations.

          Our entire healthcare system is broken, and it has VERY little to do with Obamacare. Blame the doctors and the healthcare companies instead. They’re using people’s lives and health concerns to pad their pockets.

          As for not being racist, sexist, etc.: if you vote for a man with those beliefs, you are complicit. You are enabling his hate. You are voting for the pieces of his platform you like, but you are also voting in support of the pieces you don’t. You are putting power in his hands to carry out his horrible discrimination and hate policies by electing him. You can’t support some of his policies without supporting ALL of them because once he’s elected, you cannot vote for which actions he will or will not carry out. It’s too late for that.

          1. So playing devils advocate here…..everyone that voted for Hillary also voted for 40+ years of corruption? I voted for Hillary for a lot of reasons but was still sick to my stomach thinking of all the scandals she and her husband have been caught up in over the last several decades. Is your vote for her also a vote for lying and corruption?

          2. Birch,
            My husband is a transplant surgeon and I take HUGE offense in what you have just stated. My husband works 120 hours a week, misses holidays, kids’ sporting events and birthdays because he cares just as much for his patients as he does his family. I do not know what you do for s living or your husband but do either of you put in that much effort and sacrifice to help others. Have you ever? Because my husband does it ever single week. If you do, I am sure you understand how difficult it is to do so. But he does it because people need help and no one else will do it and we want to raise our children to understand that this life is meant for doing hard things to make s difference in people’s lives. For you to insinuate that American doctors care more about buying big houses than their patients shows how ignorant you are of our healthcare system and the doctors that works tirelessly to help those in need. You disgust me for showing such little respect for people you know nothing about. You failed to mention that in order to get the training my husband and others doctors need to help people in this country he had to take on a HUGE amount of debt, and I will tell you it was not so we could live in a fancy house! Doctors have to take on more debt than I am assuming you know because you failed to take that into account when you bashed them for getting paid too much. Let me tell you it has been a very very long time since we have taken an expensive vacation in fact we never have! Although Obamacare has reduced his salary and benefits, we support it because we see how it helps those in need. Additionally, a majority of doctors are very concerned with ordering only tests absolutely needed to help their patients and for you to generalize and make rude comments otherwise again shows how little you know or understand about working in the healthcare industry. It is not doctors sitting in fancy offices dreaming of ways to make money…they are too busy running thru hospitals taking care of very sick peolpe one of which I hope you never become. When we voted for Hilary it had nothing to do with what would happen to our bank accounts, but because we believe in treating people with fairness and respect. I wish you would do the same.

        2. Tina, thank you for your response to this post. I agree with you. Such a condescending post. So many false narratives out there and “Design Mom” is perpetuating them under the guise of liberal elitism. In my economically and ethnically diverse small community in Central California we all work together as friends and neighbors and I don’t see some ignored, marginalized group. Granted we aren’t cool, enlightened, urban hipsters.

          1. Hate crimes against Muslims have gone up by 3-5 times over the past year. The KKK literally had a party on Wed. And google “Day # 1 of Trump”, where you can read all about the hate unleashed on Wed; specific examples and pictures of bigotry. Then we can talk about being condescending. People are literally frightened for their lives now. So get off your high horse.

        3. I’m late to the conversation, but feel the need to express this in regards to your post and DesignMom’s reply.

          Trump not only used hate speech in his candidacy, he also ran on a platform of hate and one that breaks the constitutional rights of American Citizens. Part of his policy platform is to create a registration that all Muslim citizens would be required to register with so that the administration can track them. That is unconstitutional, racist, and reminiscent of Nazi ideals. It is not only the fear that minorities have that they might be harassed–the Trump campaign actually campaigned on a racist platform.

          In regards to his ability to bring back jobs and his platform to do such. He routinely did not pay contractors who worked for him. He had them do the work, and then did not pay them. He ran his business into bankruptcy, all while keeping millions for himself. He has businesses here in the US that do not make their products here in the US–something which he promised to do as President. I know that people are hurting and that the economy has not returned to many areas of the United States. But the notion that Trump will bring back jobs is just false when you look at his business record.

      2. My husband voted for Trump. In his mind, Hillary was more corrupt than Donald was awful, although he did say “I don’t blame you he’s the worst” when I told him I voted for Hillary. I think this election boiled down to “I can still fight x despite y” for a lot of people on both sides.

      3. One last reply: my grandmother has fought institutionalized sexism her entire life. She is the reason that BYU has a museum of art…she discovered the art theft, she petitioned for and raised funds, she influenced the design and made the interior design choices only to be relegated to giving the closing prayer at the dedication and was then pushed out years later by older white men who didn’t like the museum being primarily for the betterment and enjoyment of the community (they saw it as a vehicle for the graduate programs). She voted for Trump, citing the Supreme Court as her reason. I was disappointed but respect that she effectively gave up the chance to see a female president in her lifetime in order to do what she believed was best for future generations.

        1. You ask, “So playing devils advocate here…..everyone that voted for Hillary also voted for 40+ years of corruption? I voted for Hillary for a lot of reasons but was still sick to my stomach thinking of all the scandals she and her husband have been caught up in over the last several decades.”

          Totally fair question. And 10 different people may answer it 10 different ways. I would say that for me personally Hillary’s scandals weren’t very scandalous. I mean her emails for example were talked about constantly, but FBI Director Comey, who clearly wanted her in jail, concluded there was nothing to prosecute. To me, it seems like a lot of her scandals were manufactured. I truly don’t believe she is corrupt. I realize not everyone agrees.

          I disagree with Hillary on other topics — she doesn’t always vote the way I would choose, she has made some big policy missteps, etc.. (Also, I’m not a Bill fan, but that’s not her fault.) But I think this same way of pretty much every political candidate. Especially anyone that has been in office for awhile. They try things. They screw up.

          I see Trump differently. I think he knew very well he was stirring up anti-semitism, anti-Muslim sentiment, pro-white supremacy sentiment. I see his well documented lifelong attitude toward women, and that because of him pussy-grabbing is on the rise.

          A generalization would be that politicians mess us and people get hurt sometimes. But the assumption is that the leaders are trying to do what’s best for the people.

          In contrast, Trump seems to truly not care that he has empowered the Alt-Right in a major way. He seems to have empowered them knowingly; that he intended to ignite hate. If Mitt Romney had been elected 4 years ago instead of Obama, would we be seeing the violence we’re seeing today? I don’t think so. Trump is not like normal candidates. He carries with him a lot of out-in-the-open hate.

          1. I wonder why many on the far right are so angered by people telling them that racism is a real issue. I think a lot of it has to do with how far removed they are from it…a lot of them live in white communities or only have white friends (not really intentionally or their own fault, sometimes it just happens that way) and so they don’t see racism or micro-aggressions as a regular thing that really happens to real people. In their minds they would never treat someone badly for their race or beliefs or orientation so therefore it must not be such a big deal? I tried explaining to my husband that when I have a hard day with the kids saying stuff like “well if you just…..” feels like a micro-aggression to me because as wonderful as he is he just doesn’t get what being a stay at home parent is like. This discussion has really opened my eyes a lot. I will be more aggressive in the future in condemning racist/sexist/misogynistic/bigoted behavior. All I ask from my friends and neighbors in real life and on the internet is for patience and understanding.

          2. YES YES YES as well.

            Oh how I miss Mitt Romney. I would be disappointed Hillary hadn’t won, I’d be disappointed at the prospect of a Republican government but I would still believe in his overall integrity and desire to do the right thing.

            Today? Trump? Not so much. This is different.

  5. Below is what I wrote on Facebook today…i then had to go about my normal routine getting the kids to school and off to work (where I couldn’t function) and I cried on and off all day. I am still in shock and disbelief and I am scared. I do want to say that I so appreciate you sharing your support for HRC. I know with you being a Mormon, there are many in that community who didn’t support her and it was courageous to speak your mind and use your platform for good. I live in San Jose by the way. My Facebook post:

    I just couldn’t do it last night. I couldn’t watch. After 8 we turned all the electronics off and put the kids to bed and acted like normal. I wanted one last night of normalcy. And then even though I didn’t know for sure how the election had ended, I tossed and turned all night so afraid for what I would inevitably have to know. And this morning I saw it splashed across the news – not only did he win, but the house and senate. And then I started sobbing. True wailing sobs. I am so scared and so sad. For my children, for my country, for me, as a woman. Do we think so little of such a qualified woman that we could elect him instead? How could this be?

    I couldn’t have told you before this election if I was a republican or a democrat (I honestly don’t know what I was registered as). I couldn’t have even told you if I really voted up to a couple of years ago. I took it all for granted and thought we were an established enough nation that we could only go so far in one direction before we would course correct back. I will never take it for granted again.

  6. This is probably the first election that I refuse to tell people who I voted for. I felt the country was too divided, too willing to hate on peoples decision that I have decided to keep my decision to myself (minus the hubby. I am not that good at secrets.) Maybe it was a statement of sorts. But to be honest, I didn’t even know who I was going to vote for until I looked at the ballet. I had it down to two people and both had pros and cons. It is the first election the hubby and I did not vote for the same president. We both had it narrowed down but we choose the opposite one. I think it was a tough election for everyone, no matter who you chose to vote for.

    I also see a lot of myself in the way people who loved Hillary are reacting. I have reacted in similar ways in past elections. And you know what I decided today? It’s so not worth it. I refuse to act that way in the future. I know I will be mad, but I have decided here and now not to take it out on people through the internet. I will gracefully morn then stand up and support. I hope I can teach my kids to do the same.

    I realized this election how alike we all really are. We have different worries and different ways of trying to get solutions to our problems but we react the same. We throw the same insults at each other, the same conspiracy theories at each other, the same names at each other. If we really sat down and talked, had honest conversations, and believed the best of people, this might not be such an issue. I watched a video last week of a woman who was on the opposite end of the political spectrum and you know what? I understood her. I agreed with a lot of what she said. But yes our solution to the problem was different. And that is what makes our republic work so well. That is what keeps it interesting.

    I think Trump is nuts but I think the fear that got him elected says something and it is time we pay some attention to those people, even if we disagree with them. Sure Trump could really screw this up. The Republicans could screw it up too with or without his help. Or the opposite could happen. But I do think we will survive the next 4 year and then we will all be facing this same thing again, possibly with opposite emotions of those we are feeling now. What we need to focus on now is loving and supporting everyone around us and fighting for our beliefs, because yes that is something we can still do even when our candidate looses.

    1. [Removed by Design Mom. This was a dumb crappy comment that came in while I was sleeping. Sorry I didn’t catch it before you responded.]

      1. Ouch, in a world of auto-correct, that was a rather rude comment. And as I like to remind my kids – you are either part of the problem or part of the solution– right now the solution is Unity – not finger pointing.

        1. Yes – I think it’s safe to say that anyone whose assessment of “the other side” is “you must have voted that way because you’re stupid” is not doing their part for unity and civility. (Also, Alison is totally right about autocorrect – or autopilot, for that matter. Is everybody who mis-types a word a stupid neanderthal? Really?)

      2. Way to be snide and divisive there, T. Elizabeth’s comments were well thought out and honest; why would you alienate her because of one spelling error? Elizabeth, thanks for sharing your thoughts.

        1. I never even saw the comment. I wrote what I had to say then shut my computer and went to sleep. I didn’t have glasses on and spelling has never been my strong point. Thanks for having my back though. I really do appreciate it.

    2. “I think Trump is nuts but I think the fear that got him elected says something and it is time we pay some attention to those people, even if we disagree with them.”

      Yes, many people — too many people — feel economically vulnerable. They believe that the economy isn’t working for them. And maybe Democrats haven’t done enough. But the notion that Republicans can or will do more to help these people is hogwash. The Republican’s “trickle down” economics has only and ever helped the wealthy. The Republicans are the ones who ruined the economy and started a useless, tragic and enormously expensive war. The Republicans don’t support raising the minimum wage. And as much as the Republicans hate Obamacare, they have never, in the last eight years, offered any alternative. None. In eight years. Which can only mean that they honestly don’t care if low-income people or the self-employed can’t afford healthcare. Trump is a grifter, and it’s just so sad that the people who truly have been struggling, who really need help the most, have been taken in.

      1. Elizabeth to my earlier point: This from a NY Magazine article by Jon Chait:
        “Trump showed special strength in counties that have seen the greatest improvement in economic conditions [since Obama took office].”
        So the people who have benefitted the most during Obama’s term just elected a billionaire who doesn’t pay taxes and cheats the small businesses that he hires. It’s just SO illogical.

        1. Right? That is what is confusing to me and what I was trying to express in “city” thoughts in the post. There’s a lot of talk about Trump inspiring people who were economically gutted during the recession. No surprise. But from my view, there was a ton of support for him from people who’ve done very well over the last 8 years.

  7. Thank you! So well said, all true, and all wise. Thanks for putting yourself out there and making your views known and standing up for goodness in the US.

  8. The Democratic party hedged a big bet when Democrats chose Clinton over Sanders in the primaries. I mourned his loss then, I mourn it even more now. We must hold onto hope and keep fighting for what’s right.

    1. I voted for Clinton in the primaries because I thought she was more centrist and therefore more easily electable. Unfortunately, it seems that misogyny is much stronger than I naively assumed. It’s heartbreaking.

      Even as a young woman in a male-dominated field who has filed a sexual harassment complaint against a colleague, I thought the world can’t possibly be so misogynistic. Even after seeing that same colleague go on to get a tenure-track faculty position at a major university, I thought it was perhaps a fluke. Even after realizing that the HR department reduced my statement to a single sentence devoid of details listing frequency, location, the ‘coincidental’ absence of said colleague’s girlfriend from the room every time, and exactly what happened, I thought I was simply unlucky enough to deal with an incompetent HR department.

      I agree, Grace. We must keep fighting for what’s right.

      1. I do not understand why the reaction to Clinton’s loss is to blame it on misogyny. I would be delighted to have a woman president, but I think voting for someone because she is a woman is as bad as voting against someone because she is a woman. Do you really think Clinton lost merely because she is a woman? and not because many many people in America disagree with her on many many things? Where is the misogyny? If Obama had lost 4 or 8 years ago, would it automatically have been because of racism?

        I voted for neither of them. I am crushed that we have him as president for the next 4 years because I think he is a horrible person; I am slightly relieved he won because I like her even less.

        1. I voted for Clinton because I consider her eminently qualified, decent, and hard-working. I liked Bernie as well, but I chose her because I thought a more moderate candidate would be better for the country in terms of encouraging compromise.

          I don’t think Clinton lost simply because she is a woman. But, I do think misogyny played a part which Sanders would not have faced. We were in uncharted territory with a woman as a presidential candidate of a major party, and it seemed an undue amount of attention was on whether she was likeable or too shrill, etc. In addition, Trump’s boasts about sexual assault are misogynistic and deeply disrespectful, and I’m saddened that so many people weren’t put off by his words and actions.

          Of course, there are complexities. My own parents voted for Trump as they are single issue anti-abortion voters; I suspect many people did the same. Others may have been motivated primarily by economic anxieties, especially as a lot of the Midwest voted that way. And if David Duke garnered 58,000 votes for Senator, there are many who voted in support of Trump’s racist and xenophobic rhetoric. I’m from the South, and unfortunately, there’s still a lot of fear and hatred and racism. As a white person, I’m sure I don’t see most of it. It’s hard to understand what other people experience if we don’t walk in their shoes, you know? I really hope he is president for only 4 years and that we all try a little harder to listen to one another.

          1. Rachel, big hugs to you for sharing that story.

            Also, misogyny definitely played a role in Trump winning. And yes, it wasn’t the only reason or, I would argue, the biggest one.

            It seemed obvious to me why she wouldn’t win: the Electoral College and the Upper Midwest. Clinton’s support of the TPP and NAFTA absolutely destoyed the economy in the Rust Belt, which was what was going to make or break the election as we so saw. There was no way she was ever going to win those states and no way for her to win the outdated Electoral College game. Not looking at international politics (Brexit, rise of populism in the EU in general, and clearly in the U.S. as indicators of what’s to come for us), not realizing that a huge, HUGE population of people saw Hillary as untrustworthy and dishonest even within the Democratic party, over-dependence on polls, NOT voting in the primaries for a candidate with a cleaner slate…so on and so on.

            I was not at all surprised that Trump won. The DNC took a bet and lost and now we suffer the consequences. If anything, I hope we’ve learned a lesson and won’t let it happen again. I think that’s why Bernie supporters are all up in arms because this is what we most feared when he lost and don’t ever want to happen again. And yes, I’m disappointed in the DNC because they deliberately worked so hard against Bernie. And now Trump gets to decide, among other things, who will fill a Supreme Court Justice seat and the Republicans will gain control there as they have everywhere else, not to mention the other Justices are getting up there in age…

  9. Two days in a high school history class would show that this is precisely how Hitler and Mussolini rose to power.

    Most people are focused on immigration and deportation fear today, but let’s not forget the very real threats Trump and he GOP have made against women’s reproductive rights and environmental protection. I shudder to think what lies ahead….

    The sentiment is spot on – we must stay engaged and involved!
    I am so glad you wrote this post, Gabrielle.

  10. I live in WV and this was a very pro-Trump state. I knew my vote for Hillary would not count, though I casted it anyway. I was hopeful the rest of the county would feel like me. I see so much hate in the school that I teach at…they are mostly white kids. We talked about it a bit in my classes but I was mourning and I didn’t want to talk with students about it much. I just said, “we need to remember to protect our citizens, their rights, our rights, our homeland.” I just want to make sure they know I still have values and believe in diversity no matter who is in public office and I will continue to fight for them.

  11. Thank you so much for this post, Gabrielle. It is well balanced and so true. What I have been thinking is that I couldn’t believe that “we” elected a person who openly objectifies women, despises different people (minorities, LGBTQ, immigrants, refugees), and is so ignorant about our pressing environment issues, foregin policy, etc. I cannot believe people would ever vote for someone who talks they way our president-elect talks (how can a woman overlook or explain what he said in that Access Hollywood bus?). My disbelief doesn’t come from an us vs. them mentality. I know different people think differently, and I believe and value different arguments (I know you do too, Gabrielle). Further, I am in shock for the message we are sending to the world.

    I read the post above about reasons for voting one way or another (high insurance policy premiums, repeated military deployments, etc.). It is hard to understand how we got where we are in each single issue, but a lot of what has happened in the last 8 years is not one person or even one political party’s responsibility. I am sure most people would agree on that. I also believe things have to change for the better.

    Our future is uncertain, but that is the nature of future. We don’t know what is going to happen. I, for one, refuse to be scared.

    We must get to work on the issues that we care about.

    1. Yes, the message to the world is horrible. Here in Germany, the people are shocked all around. My whole family is grieving hard. Fear and tears all around. Many ask: What have you done? So so so so sad.

  12. Dear White Moms who voted for Trump, Can you let me know why? I live in a blue bubble and don’t know any women who voted for trump (kinda like people in areas that don’t have a personal connection with Muslims or African Americans?) and really want to understand. My only exposure to Trump supporting women is through morman bloggers and from that I gather many are one issue voters on abortion. Is that it? Mom to mom I believe we’re all working hard to raise happy, healthy, responsible kids, we have so much in common, and I’d really like to understand your heart and thought process.



    1. The saddest part about the “anti-abortion vote” is that abortion rates go down when Democrats are in power, because they tend to support sex ed and access to abortion. The Republicans just promote abstinence. Look how well that worked out for Bristol Palin.

      1. I wish, I wish, I wish women in our country could discuss abortion in a way that every one feels safe. I truly believe that 99% of us are on the same page on this one, with the same ultimate goals.

        1. Me too! I would love to see organizations start for women to meet in person for conversations all across the nation. I don’t think any politicians have ever talked about it the way most women do. Please let me know if you ever hear of something like this.

      2. Jessie, Show me where you get your info. Guess who pushes for sex ed? Planned Parenthood. “Get them in kindergarten or as soon as possible and they will be buying our pills and getting our free condoms that fail at alarming rates and then they will come to us for abortions…the final step in the “birth control” process.” PP is the largest proponent of sex ed and of abortions. They make money off of abortions. PP is so excited when a woman has one abortion b/c with each abortion, your ‘risk’ of another goes up drastically. They are helping to perpetuate the problem. The link is logical. They admit it. Google it. Their quotes are all over the place. Abortions have gone down b/c communities members are coming together and offering crisis pregnancy centers and all sorts of financial and educational help b/c guess what…the numbers show that most woman/girls who have abortions DO NOT FEEL THEY HAVE A CHOICE! Ironically, abortions drop when we help these women get through a difficult period of life and assure them that they still have options. When Obama took office, many of us knew birth control would be considered “healthcare” and it would fail and abortion numbers would surge. Therefore, those of us who care to save women from the horrid pain and after affects of abortion decided to put our money and time where our mouths are and started volunteering and writing checks. We are on the streets with these woman and they just want help and support…PP does not offer them that. They take their money, kill their baby and show them the door…no counseling like we offer to women who are suffering from guilt of past abortions, or men who paid for them or parents who encouraged their daughter to abort their grandchild bc they didn’t want their dreams for her ruined or her reputation tarnished. We help educate them in parenting skills and offer mentors for as long as they desire…many are 6 years out and still meeting weekly with their “Angels” (the most common nickname). We help them “earn” baby supplies from attending classes. We help them with housing and education costs and gifts and food and anything they need for as long as they need and desire. Not a single one has regretted carrying her child to term and parenting or choosing to place her child in another family. We have, however, held several young women as they sobbed b/c they left our crisis center, had the abortion and now feel so alone and are traumatized. We do everything we can to help them for as long as they need/choose, but it is heartbreaking b/c they drank the koolaid and now fear their future children/husband will hate them. The nightmares they share are beyond comprehension. PP doesn’t counsel them in what they may experience. There is a lot of suffering out there and sex ed and PP are actually not helping. And for you and Gabby:

        1. Christina —

          You are right in that I couldn’t find evidence that abortion rates go up during Republican administrations. However, data from the CDC in the link below show that abortion rates tend to fall more quickly during Democratic administrations. Today, at the end of eight years under Obama, abortion rates are at historic lows.

          Regarding your argument that Planned Parenthood pushes sex ed and cheap condoms so that it can make money off of abortions, I’m honestly not sure where you are getting your information. But if it’s true, it’s a pretty poor business model, since just 3% of Planned Parenthood’s services are abortions and zero dollars of its federal funding can be spent on abortions. See this chart: The vast majority of what Planned Parenthood does — 97% — is cancer screenings, contraception services (which, again, help prevent abortions), treatment for STDs, and other women’s health services.

          Abortion isn’t the right choice for every woman or even most women, and I applaud the work that you are doing to help women who choose to go through with their pregnancies or who regret having had an abortion. Speaking for myself, I got pregnant unexpectedly when my husband had been very very clear that he wanted only one child. I offered to have an abortion. Luckily, he recognized that I would have been devastated, and so we went through with the pregnancy. I mention this to show you that I am not pro-abortion and also that I understand that some women who have abortions carry regret. But the facts just don’t support the notion that “abortions surge” under Democratic administrations.



          1. Jessie,
            Planned Parenthood only provides Referrals for cancer screenings, they are not Providers of cancer screenings.

            Margaret Sanger started her birth control clinics in poor areas like Brooklyn, NY because she was “advocating that certain types of people were unfit to procreate.” **** If that is not racism, well I don’t know what is.

            PP claims only 3% of their services are abortions. That means approximately 300,000 abortions are performed per year. 823 per day, 34 per hour. That’s an ugly 3%.
            In NYC alone, more African American babies are aborted than are born EACH day. Again: racism.

            You are almost right about zero dollars of federal funding spent on abortions. The Hyde Amendment bans most federally funded Medicaid payments for abortion. However, Hillary Clinton wanted to REPEAL that amendment.


    2. Thank you for actually asking what my thought process was, instead of just assuming I am an uneducated redneck, racist or, as I have been called to my face “f-ing ignorant”. I am a white mother of three from southwest Missouri, which is a very red area. I have followed politics my whole life. Let’s face it, we were not given two wonderful candidates to choose from. Yes, Donald Trump said many things that I believe were wrong and that I do not agree with. However, his main appeal to me was his business knowledge. I do not like how our government is growing larger and larger each year. I do not like the corporate taxes (my family owns a small business and we pay 38% in taxes), I do not like the sky-rocketing cost of insurance due to the Affordable Care Act. Our government needs to be run like a business and I am hoping (eyes closed, fingers-crossed here) that he will be able to guide America down a more prosperous path with his knowledge and his connections. I am hoping he will put smart buisness minds in his Cabinet. I am a Christian, I spent a lot of time in prayer about my decision, up to sitting in the parking lot at my polling place praying to have wisdom about my decision. When it comes down to it, I believe that Hillary Clinton is corrupt. I believe she showed carelessness and disregard for national security when she put a server in her basement. The Clintons have had scandal after scandal and they are never held accountable for their actions. I find it amazing that she was even the Democratic candidate, there are so many other better people who could have been in her position. I don’t want to go on and on about all of her negatives, but when I made my decision it came down to economics and national security. Yes, we are all trying to raise happy and healthy children. I want the same things you do for your kids. I believe that so many people in the “City” are in a bubble of blue. My community has a median househole income of $27,000 for a family of four. Poverty is mainstream here. I live in a predominately white area which has nothing to do with my political opinions. It is offensive to me that people would assume that I have no experience with other races, therefore I am not smart or caring or loving enough to vote democrat. I want to encourage people to work hard, to support themselves and not rely on the government. As Christians we should be helping the poor by our own joyful giving, not through our taxes.

      I am also curious to see why people voted for Hillary? I want to understand as well. From what I have seen it seems that people vote mostly on social issues. I do not believe that is the government’s place. Socially we should love one another and the government is there to keep us safe.

      I am a little disappointed in this post from Gabrielle. I have really respected your work in the past but I feel that you are not being as open-minded towards people who get their news from a variety of places, including Fox News. I do not hate my country. I am informed and intelligent even though I don’t live in a city. I am not sure if I will continue reading.

      1. “never held accountable for their actions” is incorrect. It’s just wrong. She testified before Congress and was cleared of wrongdoing. Twice. What more do you want? Did you know that the George Bush White House “lost” 22 million emails? Like Clinton, the Bush White House used a private email server—its was owned by the Republican National Committee. Have they been held accountable for that? No. And if you’d like to talk about people not being held accountable for their actions, let’s discuss Trump failing to pay his workers the agreed-upon amounts he contracted them for. Let’s talk about Trump University swindling poor hapless souls who did not receive the “education” they were promised. Let’s talk about Trump not being held accountable for objectifying and assaulting women. Seriously, let’s talk. I want to know how you think Trump has been held accountable for his actions but Hillary, a lifetime public servant, has not. Please explain your thought process to me. I’m baffled.

        1. As vile as it was, Trumps objectifying and assaulting was not conducted through use and abuse of the highest offices of government authority. How does a Hillary supporter speak to abuse of women? She is still married to Bill Clinton. Please explain.

          1. How does a Hillary supporter speak to abuse of women? Simple: she is not her husband. Are you held accountable for every single thing your husband does? And he, you?

      2. I’m just going to put out his 2 court dates: November 28th for fraud and December 16th he’ll meet a judge over a pending case of child rape. Hillary’s court dates are when? None. Because she was cleared yet AGAIN of any crimes. Please do not throw out the “she’s corrupt ” with NO EVIDENCE but a gut feeling.

        Also, trump has routinely not paid workers. Workers like those in your area. Hard workers: painters, builders, construction workers. He didn’t even pay his staff on his campaign? Is he smart for screwing over Americans? Also, do you pay taxes? I do too. Guess which candidate brags about screwing over Americans? That money could go to programs that help people. You want social security? You’re paying into it but is trump?

        Also, I’m not Christian. How do my Jewish daughters fit into your world view?

        1. Your Jewish daughters fit into my world view in the same space my Christian daughters, my Hindu nephews and my atheist best friend’s children do. They fit in the space of love and acceptance of them.

          I thought I could post some respectful and thoughtful comments here without being patronized and assumptions made about my acceptance of other religions. Obviously I was wrong. My opinions are my own and I exercised my right to vote in the way I thought best. What’s done is done. I hope you have a lovely day.

        2. Trump paid for the vast majority of his campaign(and it was half the cost that Hill spent…and $1,000,000 from Qatar? Many more $$$ to her Charity and to her campaign from Muslim extremists. All available if you google). Trump is not accepting his income as POTUS. Trump’s campaign manager IS THE FIRST SUCCESSFUL FEMALE CAMPAIGN MANAGER EVER. Not yelling, just emphasizing. Didn’t hear much about that, did we. (Maybe b/c 7 or 8 of Hill’s top people are closely related to top dogs in the media???) Trump has always hired women in prestigious positions and sometimes the highest positions. He needs a filter, is a jerk sometimes, crude and disrespectful, but as Charles Barkley (HUGE Hillary supporter) said, “You all are a bunch of hypocrites for being so disgusted in his comments. Those comments are everywhere by everyone…in our music, movies, books (50 Shades of Grey and many more).” Lastly, what about Hillary’s comments about Catholics and deplorable Christians? Regarding not paying his staff on the campaign. Show me the info. My husband and I regularly do work…hard, long work for someone or some organization and refuse to accept payment and anyone could spin that to us not getting paid.

          1. Christina, Trump won. You don’t need to keep campaigning against Hillary. It doesn’t matter if you think Hillary is an awful person anymore. She’s not going to be president. She may barely be in the news from now on.

            Based on your comment, it sounds like two things you like about Trump are that he ran a relatively less expensive campaign and that his campaign manager is a woman. Both admirable things.

            Thank you for sharing that.

      3. I’m really grateful to you, Erin, for being willing to put this out there. I don’t know many people who supported Trump, and the ones I know who did won’t or haven’t talked to me about it. My godchildren and their parents — my husband’s best friend from high school — are Trump voters and activists for him. Knowing that they supported him when our family is literally terrified of him has made it really difficult to imagine how we’re even going to spend Christmas with them. It’s a really hard place to be in.

        What I’m hearing from you — what I hear from the few Trump voters who will talk to me, too — is that you didn’t really like Trump, but you *couldn’t stand* Hillary Clinton. Is that right?

        I think what’s hard for me is that most of the support I’m hearing from Trump is just factually untrue (I think that might be what Gabby is getting at when she says to turn off right-wing news outlets). I have left-wing friends who also posted only extreme left-wing news outlets which also peddled outright lies, and I don’t like what is happening on either the left or the right where we don’t even have shared facts or shared truths anymore.

        Like, what you said about Trump’s business acumen. Did you know that he actually has dramatically less money than if he’d simply invested his inheritance in stock market index funds? He has been a *terrible* businessman, with failure after failure. His failed business record is part of what scares me about him leading the country. And part of why he has failed is that he doesn’t play fair and has made so many enemies — which is also terrifying when many of our enemies have nuclear weapons.

        And the part about Hillary’s corruption. She has been subject to partisan attacks on her character for 30 years, and she has never been convicted of anything. I simply can’t believe anyone is such an evil genius to escape our entire legal system when they’ve done something wrong. I actually went through and *read* most of her emails, and there’s nothing in them. (She talks about splitting creme brulee with Huma Abedin!) And W. “lost” millions of emails which were never recovered. When that happened (long before Hillary was running for president) I thought that was corrupt and was angry about it. Were you? Colin Powell and Condi Rice also had private servers; were they corrupt, too?

        The email thing (and Benghazi) seem so trivial and typical to me in terms of “problems high level politicians have.” Embassy attacks with American fatalities have been happening regularly since 9/11 — I don’t blame W. for that, and I don’t blame Obama or his administration. Emailing through giant bureaucracies is hard — I don’t blame W. and his administration for that, and I don’t blame Obama or his administration.

        But Trump’s bad behavior was extraordinary. The KKK and American Nazi Party endorsed him. I’m Jewish; that is legit terrifying to me. He has said horrific things about women and girls. He has said such vulgar insults on television and twitter I wouldn’t let my 13 year old watch. He admitted — bragged — about sexually assaulting women and getting away with it. He told bald-faced lies even when he was confronted with the truth. He insulted a gold star American family, which as the daughter of a vet just horrifies me. These things are just unacceptable, in any candidate, right or left. Aren’t they?

        So I really want to know — what is so terrible about Hillary Clinton that you were willing to vote for him against her? It’s a real question, and I’m super grateful you’re willing to talk about it. But are there real things she’s actually said or done, from legitimate, fact-checking news sources, that you think are worse than bragging about sexual assault?

        I’m really struggling with this, and glad you’re willing to engage.

        1. I’m disappointed that DesignMom has chosen to alienate a number of her readers with this post. There are several very articulate, honest and well-written responses from her readers all over the country. It’s a shame that the idea of embracing different points of view is actually just talk for a lot of people.

        2. Thanks for your willingness to discuss and listen to a differing point of view. I appreciate your civility.

          Another one my problems with Hillary Clinton that I didn’t mention in my original comment is the fact that she is a career politician. Our government is not working the way it currently is being run. I feel that she ran on her resume (which, I have to admit, is pretty impressive). Nothing I saw or heard showed me what she would do in the future. That is just my opinion, take it how you will. I could list everything that I disagree with, however it just doesn’t seem worth it at this point.

          As I originally mentioned, I am not going to sit here and say that Trump is an upstanding man. I do not know him and if I did and he said some of the distasteful things he said I would definitely choose not to be around him. However, I had two choices to vote. Sitting out was not an option for me, nor was voting third party or write it. I weighed pros and cons and went with what I thought was best. I find it so disappointing that people want to take how you vote as a label for your character. If you met me in person and knew nothing about my political beliefs you would see that I am a regular mom that loves my family and country. I love people of all races and religions and socio-economic status. I support relgious freedom, isn’t that what this country was founded upon?

          In the end, I want the country to succeed. I want our citizens to be happy. I want to be able to voice my opinions thoughtfully and respectfully without being attacked. Maybe I will look back in a few years and think I made a mistake. Maybe I will look back and be proud of my decision, only time will tell. Thanks for asking my opinion and I appreciate your willingness to discuss.

      4. I appreciate your concern for the economy. That is one of the reasons I voted against Donald Trump. I grew up in a mostly white rust belt town with very little job opportunity. I saw the impact of plant closings and the limited options of only low wage jobs. But I did not hear Donald present any plan for bringing back job opportunities to these areas. He talked about increasing spending on infrastructure – but so did Hillary. And the realty is all the “no big government/fiscally conservative” Republicans in Congress will not agree to pay for it. Donald has not demonstrated to me that he is a successful business man. His casinos have declared bankruptcy at least 4 times. He defaulted on his municipal bond debt – which means small towns that financed his hotels through taxes were never paid back. He has been sued multiple times for failure to pay small businesses what they are owed. And since he has yet to release his taxes we really have no idea how good of a business man he is and what his ties are outside this country. I would guess probably many – because whether we like it or not, we are in a global economy and must operate our businesses and government with that view in mind. Yes. I agree he will cut corporate taxes but that only helps business owners – large and small. I’m afraid that many disenfranchised Americans will remain disenfranchised and disillusioned for years to come. Right now, I am focusing on praying that this election outcome will not hurt this country as much as I fear it will.

      5. I also cannot wrap my mind around Christians who vote for someone who says and does everything against the message of Jesus: disrespecting women verbally and physically, treating poorly immigrants and different races, creating divisions instead of building bridges, being proud and entitled, thinking one is better than the other… I really cannot conceive of it…

        1. Exactly! I really can’t understand the mindset of someone saying they are Christian and pro-Trump – the two are incompatible, even the Pope said so! Ditto someone saying they vote Trump due to his business acumen – how many failed businesses and bankruptcies does he have again?

        2. And all the bible says about being a good leader is exactly the opposite of what Trump was all his life and is now. So why vote Trump as a Christian? I am very pro-life and a lifetime helper of unborn babys here in Germany, have a large family myself – and could never ever vote for Trump. That is so NOT what would Jesus do. In no way. So sad.

          1. Many Catholics or Christians do not believe in birth control or abortions. Hillary has stated she would support abortions and late term abortions. Trump says he is pro life so that is where their support would lie. For a religious person, that is a deal breaker.

      6. Hi Erin! I’ve never commented here before, but felt like I needed to respond to your thoughtful comment. (I also wanted to preface this: I know this is a heated, contentious, emotional issue for a lot of people, so I completely understand if you’ve stepped away and stopped reading the responses. I’d love for you to get back to me, but I understand if you can’t, and I’ll try to be as respectful and thoughtful as you were.)

        You asked why people voted for Hillary. I wrote a long, rambly, disjointed response…and then realized it wasn’t really answering your question. It was, as so often happens, answering a different question that you hadn’t asked. But it did have kernels of an answer in it, so I’m trying again.

        I voted for Hillary because my take on government is significantly different from yours. (At least judging by your post–I could certainly be wrong.) I don’t think government should be run like a business any more than I think a school should be run like an airport or a church should be run like a library or a family should be run like a government. I think all of these things are great and useful on their own, but there’s a reason they aren’t all run the same way. I grew up in Idaho, where the idea that government should be run like a business is also popular, and I’m sure I even supported the idea when I was younger. But now…I think a government should be run like a government (preferably like a *good* government)–and I don’t think that size is a good way to judge how the government is governing. There’s just so much more to it than that. Certainly there are parts of the government that are unwieldy and could stand to be trimmed, but there are also parts that don’t have enough support to function properly and would do their job better if they were bigger. I also think having experience in the operation of a government (as a senator and secretary of state in Hillary Clinton’s case) is a feature in a candidate, not a bug. (Though I certainly empathize with the frustration–there are definitely career politicians not doing their jobs. I’m currently very annoyed with certain senators for not allowing a vote on a Supreme Court nominee for an unprecedented length of time–which is to say, for not doing their jobs for a number of months, and declaring that they would continue to do so if Clinton was elected, while crippling the highest court in the nation…just because they can.)

        I also voted for her based on social issues. I like that she supports religious freedoms and healthcare (including mental health care) for all. I think the protections of marriage should be available to all couples regardless of their respective sexes/genders, and she supports that. I also like that she supports access to both birth control and abortion. (And that abortion rates go down when we have a president who supports access to birth control and sex ed.)

        One thing I struggle with is her anti-regulation stance (and her support of the banking industry). (I could go on for a long while about the repeal of Glass-Steagall and its connection to the Great Recession, but I’ll spare you.) (Erin–Depending on how exactly your business-stance and small-government preferences break down, this might actually be a reason for you to like her.)

        I’m not concerned about her email use for three reasons: 1. The FBI twice had the opportunity to examine them and found no cause for prosecution. (Including the most recent inquiry based on emails found in the Anthony Weiner case.) 2. Her use of email (and servers) wasn’t materially different from other secretaries of state (including Republicans) around the same time. 3. Her loss of emails wasn’t any different from the Republican administration immediately preceding the Democrat administration she served. From my perspective, these are average problems at worst. (And concerns about “the Clintons” don’t bother me any more than concerns about “the Trumps”–I don’t think Hillary is responsible for Bill, just as I don’t think Donald is responsible for Melania.)

        Does that answer your question about why I voted for her? Have I left anything obvious out? I’d love to hear more about *why* you think government should be run as a business (obviously my metaphor above isn’t perfect, but it was the most short-and-sweet way I could think of to describe how I feel about it–obviously I’m not immune to rambling). I also want to ask you something about your stance about social issues not being the government’s place, but I can’t seem to word it right. I’d like to ask you to elaborate, but I know you may not feel comfortable doing so, and it seems unfair to ask you to when I can’t articulate my own question.

        Thanks again for your thoughtful and calm post.
        I also wanted to thank you for not lumping “us” all in together and instead asking about our perspectives–I know it’s hard to do (especially when one feels attacked and/or misunderstood), and I think that’s really where our biggest problem as a country lies–that each party is too often being painted primarily by its supporters who shout the loudest (and then we have conversations where person A isn’t responding to person B at all but is rather responding to the larger impressions of person B’s political party–and to be perfectly clear, I think this is a problem on all sides). It isn’t a good way to judge anything or anyone. Also, I didn’t address any of my feelings about Trump here, mostly because you didn’t ask about them. But if you’d like to know specifics, I’d be more than happy to elaborate.

        1. Sarah,

          Thanks for your respectful and kind tone. I appreciate it a lot. I never ever comment on blog posts because it seems to be pointless and honestly, after posting my original comment I will probably never do it again. There are so many people who need to vent right now, but I also wanted a chance to show a differing view. Your comment gave me a lot to think about and I have spent some time mulling over your comments.

          What I want to say most of all is in response to your last paragraph, “not lumping “us” all in together and instead asking about our perspectives–I know it’s hard to do (especially when one feels attacked and/or misunderstood), and I think that’s really where our biggest problem as a country lies–that each party is too often being painted primarily by its supporters who shout the loudest (and then we have conversations where person A isn’t responding to person B at all but is rather responding to the larger impressions of person B’s political party–and to be perfectly clear, I think this is a problem on all sides).”

          I think you are so right. It is easy to paint Trump supporters as bigots and rednecks because of a small group of people. I have never attended a Trump rally and engaged in shouting “Lock her up.” I have never used the N word. I do not support stopping aid for refugees or banning refugees. I do, however, think we should thoroughly vet anyone who comes here. Some refugees are wonderful people, however we cannot pretend that within the thousands and thousands of people that want to come here for safety that there might not be at least one that wants to harm us. It is just not logical. I really believe that we should help people in poverty. I was a teacher for many years in a poor, rural school district and I have seen my students’ poverty. I have also seen those families take advantage of the help that they are given by the government. I guess that’s what I meant when I said that I don’t think it is the government’s place to take care of all of our social needs. I do not think that there should be unending welfare benefits. I believe there should be more regulation. Some people do not abuse the system and only use food stamps or other aid when they truly need it, then work hard to get back on their feet. I see firsthand through my employees so many that have no desire to work to better themselves. I believe if it was harder to receive help that there would more motivation to work. We have had the hardest time with keeping good employees, ones that want to work. My husband and I own a lawn care business with 30 employees (which is a larger business in our small town). We start all employees at $10/hour with overtime and benefits and usually at least two pay raises a year. Minimum wage in my state is $7.65. We have employees that will refuse to work over 30 hours a week because their benefits will be cut back. Several of our employees get over $600 in food stamps a month, when my family of five has a budget of $400 for the month on groceries because WE are responsible for providing food for our family, not other taxpayers. When I see these same employees spending their cash on alcohol, cigarettes, $20 on lunch at a gas stations, it infuriates me. I also pay an exorbitant amount of money for our health insurance because we do not qualify for any kind of help from the government. I could choose not to have insurance and go the ER every time I have strep throat and let other people pay for me health care, but I don’t because I am responsible for my health. Can you see from my point of view? I understand that I am jaded due to what I see daily, but it just doesn’t seem right to me. Also, I know that there are so many great programs that the government provides, but when we are so far in debt I feel that unnecessary social programs should be cut in order to pay that down. I do feel that access to sex education and birth control is necessary. I am not against Planned Parenthood, I used their services for many years and they do a lot of good things. I do have a problem with abortion, but that is another conversation that I will not get into.

          That may not have made a lot of sense, it was kind of stream of consciousness but I wanted to respond to you because I really appreciated how you responded to me.

          One more thing, many people were saying how now that Trump is the president-elect Muslims and other “marginalized people” should be terrified. What about the riots in Portland last night? I have no problem with peaceful protest, but that was not peaceful. What about the white man in Chicago who got into a fender bender, stepped out of his car to exchange insurance information then was beaten by two black men because they said he was one of those “white Trump supporters” ? Watch the video. People are cheering them on to keep beating him. How is that right? Also, people tweeting to assassinate him ASAP? That is not loving or respectful. Neither side is without fault. Neither side is perfect. Labeling people because of their political vote is insanity. I am hoping that we can all come together, which, if you watched his speech on election night, Trump called for. We need to give him a chance and maybe it will be the biggest mistake of all time, who knows. I know that all I can do is continue to pray for everyone and live according to my values.

          Thanks again for listening. I truly hope this gives you a different perspective and some things to think about as well. I wish you the best. :)

  13. I live in small town, western North Carolina, and my Hillary vote really put me in a minority in my area. All around me, people were trying for months to convince themselves that Trump was “the Christian choice” so they could overcome their misgivings and vote for him. To me, there is nothing Christian about any of his statements or stances. I think the Christian choice is someone who treats everyone with the respect and love that Jesus mandated, regardless of their individual circumstances, but for many of the people around me, it came down to abortion. After seeing the election results yesterday, my stunned middle schoolers and I were discussing it, and I was so proud of them not giving in to the hate in their school. Almost half of the students there are Hispanic, and they are terrified. This election has been so divisive and polarizing that it breaks my heart.

      1. Well said, Eleanor. And I totally agree that it came down to abortion. Many Trump supporters that I knew made apologetic hugs about their vote, claiming that they could only support Pro-Life. I long for the day when that issue does not decide the politics in our country.

    1. To all the people who made their decision based on abortion, please think about this:
      The Pro-choice side would NEVER force you to have an abortion. The Pro-life side will ABSOLUTELY force you to bear a child.
      Which side cares about YOU more?

      1. I hear you. I’m pro-choice. And the more I talk with women, the more I realize there is not currently a non-complex way for people to talk about abortion. Many women thinking about it can’t picture being “forced” to bear a child because they are eagerly trying to conceive children.

    2. I was reading Emily Henderson’s blog post from yesterday & today, asking Trump & Hillary voters to share their views. She’s shared her own thoughts and I *loved* her point about abortion: “Until there is proper sex education and, way more importantly, easy/free access to birth control then the pro-choice/pro-life is a conversation I will never entertain. Nobody, NOBODY wants an abortion.”

      You can read her full thoughts here

      The way I see it is that pro-choice people want all of that: the ability for a woman to choose what she wants to do with her body (why is it anyone else’s business??) and the education & choice to prevent it, all of which without barrier (economic, geographic or otherwise), as well as giving MEN the education and resources to also participate in that decision. Meanwhile, pro-life people just want that: they just want that baby out walking the world with NO care for how that mother is going to bring that baby to term, support the child once it’s born, the quality of life the child will have or the implications an unwanted baby will have on society as a whole. Why is it so impossible for pro-lifers to get behind education and prevention?? Why let it get to the point of having to harass women about their bodies/sex lives/sins if you can PREVENT it ALL in the first place?? And also share some of that burden with men by educating THEM as well, since they have as much contribution to making a baby as a woman does. I’m so tired of the burden falling only on women. I think pro-lifers would be far FAR more productive helping people who are dealing with infertility (plus it would ring more true to their cause).

    3. I find the Pro-life movement for him fascinating. There is zero doubt in my mind that he’s pro-choice (even if he has to say otherwise to go with the Republican agenda).

      Also, I completely agree with Megan. I don’t understand the future life of a fetus being put above a living woman’s life and I never will, which is not that I think abortion should be taken lightly either. But it should always, ALWAYS be a choice. If you’re not the one having to raise that child, I don’t see how it’s anyone’s business.

      1. “Meanwhile, pro-life people just want that: they just want that baby out walking the world with NO care for how that mother is going to bring that baby to term, support the child once it’s born, the quality of life the child will have or the implications an unwanted baby will have on society as a whole.”

        It’s statements like that which stall this discussion and create animosity. (Full disclosure – I don’t live in the US, and would have voted Hillary if I did.) As a pro-life person, I don’t believe that at all. Pro-life means caring and support for the mom and baby from pregnancy, through birth, and following baby’s birth. Making hurtful and sweeping generalizations about people who hold a particular position is unhelpful at best.

        Also, Summer, you must recognize how offensive and painful it us to those of us who are pro-life to refer to a pre-born baby as having a “future life”.

        1. Sunny, I very much appreciate the first part of your statement regarding supporting both mother and child. Also, I’m very sorry that was offensive, I didn’t mean it to be.

          I would think forcing a woman to have a child she didn’t want (and, maybe worse, forcing a child to be born to someone who doesn’t want them) to be more offensive. (I don’t mean for that to be hurtful either, but just stating my opinion.)

          On a more positive note, November is National Adoption Month. There are 163,000,000 orphans in the world and 107,000 adoptable children in the United States, so I encourage anyone truly prolife to please get involved with the life that’s on this planet.

          1. Thanks for your thoughtful reply, Summer. Great point about adoption! Another way to get involved might be around issues that are linked to some unwanted pregnancies, such as getting involved with organizations that work with disadvantaged teens, or women at risk of abuse.

            Another thing, I think, for all of us to remember, is that no-one knows what leads to a person holding a particular opinion or perspective. We all have very deep-seated reasons and experiences for believing what we do, and I think they often start with what we feel is the best way to care for others. Hopefully we can continue these conversations in our real lives from a place of genuine care.

        2. But she’s right. I’m a life-long Evangelical, and while I admire our passion for the unborn, there’s pretty much zero interest in that pregnant woman getting medical care (if poor), or healthcare for the baby post-birth. As a demographic, we are vehemently against “big-government” who could provide those things. Charity is great, but it simply can not do enough. I’m going to be honest: I am 100% fed up with my fellow Christians and their obsession about the unborn, but not after they’re born. It is currently very difficult for me to attend church currently. The equivocation and rationalization is stunning.

          1. Meggles, Not all pro-life folks are like that (having an obsession with the unborn but not caring about them after they are born). I am about to list all this stuff that me and my people are involved in, not to toot my own horn, but to show you that not all evangelicals are lazy and complacent. In my church of 140 people, there are 8 foster families (including my husband and I) and every single family has fostered for over 10 years, a few up to 28 years, and has adopted MANY children out of the foster care system. I can count 12 children/teens/young adults who have been adopted by our 8 families. Not only that, our church feels very strongly about fighting for the orphan AND the widow, as that is scriptural and the message of Jesus. I have had a baby/child in my house for 16-36 months, loving it and caring for it like it was my own, to then have it’s mama decide she wants to clean up her life and get her child back. TWICE. You know who drove those mamas to her counseling sessions, job interviews, drug tests, etc? Me. I came alongside the baby AND the mama. I am not the only one in my church who has done this. We have a thriving ministry to people with disabilities and a thriving ministry to kids who live in government housing (and their parents). We are heavily involved at Christ’s Table, a homeless shelter that serves lunch 7 days a week. A few of us open our homes at dinner time, 7 days a week, to folks we serve at the shelter. We are heavily involved in YoungLives, a ministry to teen moms that focuses on coming alongside these very young mothers (and their families) and supporting them and loving them and doing everything we can to help provide for them and their baby. Many times, I have had folks in need living in my house and we have provided for, literally, their every need for as long as they needed us to do so. For example, a teen mom I worked with lived with us for 4 months (she was one of several who have stayed for varying lengths of time). She had a toddler. We fed them, clothed them and put a roof over their heads. I drove her to and from school and I drove her to and from work and I babysat her son while she handled her stuff. We never gave her a time limit on her welcome. She worked through what she needed to work through and saved every penny of her paychecks (because we were funding every other part of their lives for that time frame) and eventually finished school and was able to get an apartment on her own. I am 1 out of 4 women I know personally in my church who were stay-at -home moms, and then went out and got jobs, putting our “own” kids with a babysitter, solely so that we would have more money to help give these children and their mothers the resources they need. I don’t feel like I need to say this, but I will, very few of the folks we have served over the course of our marriage are white. One of the reasons I am not a fan of big government is that because, in my small community, it just is almost not needed. If the church everywhere was doing it’s job, the government funded programs would be almost obsolete. I am sorry that you are in a place where “Christians” are obsessed with the unborn but not spending themselves on those who are already here on Earth. I am sorry you are surrounded by “Christians” not getting their hands dirty. Be encouraged that there are some of us out there who are. Maybe you should look into finding a different church? Love to you.

      2. Coming from a country where abortion is a big issue I share people’s frustration when this issue appears to trump (pardon the pun) all other issues. I too don’t see Trump as a pro-lifer. It disturbs me greatly that people would overlook his racism and misogyny just because they want a supposedly pro-life president.

  14. Gabby,

    Thanks for this. Yesterday was rough. I’m checking in from a very blue bubble of Atlanta in the middle of the very red state of Georgia, and I didn’t see this coming. Not because I underestimated Trump. But because I overestimated my fellow Americans’ standards.

    Today I am mourning the loss of the trajectory I felt our country was traveling on- a place of inclusiveness, acceptance and the quest for equality for our citizens. America is special because we value those things, our journey towards the promise of America. Today I am worried about the progress we’ve made.

    But what I don’t hear a lot of people talking about is the disintegration of intellect and truth. Trump ran as an unapologetic buffoon, employing no preparation and not even bothering to propose serious (read doable) positions. With no intellectual curiosity. Attacking facts. Weaponizing fear. And they liked it.

    So today, I am most worried about where we go from here if we can’t even agree on the same truth. If facts are viewed as subjective (facts are facts! There are no “liberal facts”!). If science is questioned. If the institutions we rely on for our democracy are continually politicized. If a segment of our population feels that they need to only view “conservative media”. And that conservative media pedels in conspiracy theories.

    How do we get on the same page if we can’t even operate with the same assumptions of truth?

    1. “the disintegration of intellect and truth”

      I agree! I think it’s a big problem. But I confess, I hesitate bringing it up, because I think so many people quickly feel attacked, as if just by discussing it, we’re attacking any one who disagrees, or assuming they are uneducated. Which is not true.

      1. Didn’t you post a link to an article on the “illusion of truth effect”? And doesn’t intellect include exercising judgement?

  15. Thank you for this! I’m trying so hard to be hopeful and accepting of the outcome of this election–and it seems like there are calls from all areas of my life to remember that Trump supporters are complicated, but moral people…but, I just can’t do it. It feels like such crap! There is no legitimate fear that can justify hate, and monetary fears are the absolute least justifiable. I can’t get over the fact that the “I’m not a sexist, racist, xenophonbe Trump supporter” who voted for Trump because they are “fiscally conservative” in essence have chosen to value their own money over the dignity of all people. It truly breaks my heart. And then there are the “I’m not a sexist, racist, xenophonbe Trump supporter” who voted for Trump only because they are pro-life. Again, there is no legitimate issue or cause that can justify hate. And I’m also very frustrated with this particular voter because they are also condoning the obstructionist nonsense that paralyzed the Senate from allowing the confirmation hearing of Merrick Garland. The are allowing their cause essentially to benefit from cheating, bratty behavior and while feeling that they can still maintain a place on the moral high road or that the end justifies the means. It doesn’t and this election proves that. It’s disgusting. There is a right and a wrong side of history and supporting a man who grabs women by the genitals, wants to ban Muslims, is making immigrant fearful, starts Twitter battles with the pope, makes fun of disabled people, is facing rape charges, started a university to defraud people, stiffs his workers, started a movement to discredit President Obama’s Americanness, is unwilling to put his business in a blind trust while president, etc etc is empowering the wrong side of history and I refuse to do that–or to bend to requests to “understand” and “accept” that these supports are supporting something other than hate, fear, and division. Not to get hyperbolic, but I’m sure there were many slave holders who own slaves simply for financial reasons and that there were many Nazis who were fighting to preserve a way of life that they valued. There is no legitimate concern or fear that can justify attacking the dignity of other people.

    Can you tell I’m still in the “anger” stage of my grief process?

  16. BEST advice to ANY Americans: Avoid like the plague the mean-spirited Conservative media–Rush and his ilk. Run from them. I know once-reasonable people who, thanks to years of listening to him, do not even know they are now full of enmity and hate–they actually feel righteous about it.

    I blame RL for the division in the Republican party which produced our President-elect.

    Same is said for Liberal media. HATE is HATE, even if the political positions discussed are your own. Turn it OFF.

  17. Thanks so much for this post – it really resonated with me and was exactly what I needed right now. Please do keep sharing your thoughts – and suggestions – on these issues. I particularly appreciated your comment about following thought-leaders from communities of color. I am glad I can see conversations on FB about race and privilege – it gives me a chance to think about the issues and mull them over without always having to jump right in. I know it’s made me more open about having frank discussions with my children (though I’m sure I have more to do).

  18. Long time reader here. Considering the lack of comments here, I would say that most of your readership are the silent majority. There’s a reason they are silent. It’s because liberals are tolerant only of physical differences. They are rabidly intolerant and viciously insulting of ideas and ways of thinking that differ from theirs. One reader above in the comments insulted another reader who tried to thoughtfully explain her vote by saying, “you can’t spell “ballot” so I think we know who you voted for”. Gosh, I bet she’s not only stupid, surely she’s a racist, too?
    I don’t like Trump at all. I seriously considered voting for Hilary, even though I have voted Republican all my life. For me, the bottom line is that I want conservative judges appointed to the Supreme court, and I don’t want someone who will send our militry to die in a foreign country for political reasons.
    If the democratic party had ANY OTHER CANDIDATE but Hilary Clinton, Trump wouldn’t be president elect. It’s not that she’s a woman, it’s that she is a polarizing figure, and the moderate voter obviously couldn’t bring themselves to vote for her.
    Whichever party can stop drinking their own party’s special brand of kool-aid long enough to put forward a MODERATE candidate, that party will win it all. The majority of America doesn’t want far right, they don’t want far left, they want someone who is in the middle. I would have LOVED to cast my vote for a moderate Democrat on Nov 8th. I wish they would have given me that candidate to vote for.

    1. R — I respectfully disagree that liberals are “tolerant only of physical differences.” Or that they are rabidly intolerant of different ideas. When Scalia and Thomas were nominated to the Supreme Court, the Democrats voted for him. Meanwhile, the Republicans refused to even hold hearings on Garland when it WAS THEIR CONSTITUTIONAL DUTY! Or take abortion. liberals are not pro-abortion. They simply believe that all women should have the right to choose. Meanwhile, Christian conservatives, who have every right to believe that abortion is a sin, want their beliefs imposed on the rest of us. This is more than intolerance towards a different point of view. It is an attempt to impose one religion’s tenets on everyone. And isn’t that the reason our founding fathers left England in the first place?

      Also, Clinton was the MODERATE candidate. Bernie Sanders was far more to the left.

        1. Jen — Moderate is, as you point out, relative. But exactly which Democratic presidential candidates are you thinking of that fell far enough to the right of Hillary Clinton to make her not a centrist, moderate candidate? I’m asking honestly. Best, Jessie

    2. It is not intolerant to reject hate. I am a proud progressive and I have made peace with past elections that didn’t turn my way, but this one is different and to pretend that it is the same is to minimize the legitimate concerns of Muslims, immigrants, women, children, disabled people, blacks, news reporters, open hearted Americans who feel scared and angry today and yesterday. I didn’t agree with George Bush’s policies–that’s politics and I quickly got over it and quietly amped up for the next round. This is different. To remain silent in the face of hate and discrimination is not “tolerance,” it’s cowardice. I am tolerant, but I am not a coward! (And, of course, everyone knows that commenters that harp on spelling and see it as indicative of intelligence are not seriously engaged with the issues–I’m sure that response came from a place of anger. I think we both can agree that we should all be more “tolerant” of spelling mistakes! But, why was that poster being so cagey about who she voted for. Your vote is your voice, if you can’t be proud of it, you are using it wrongly. I won’t call her out for spelling, but I will call her out for that!)

    3. It’s very likely that many readers here are part of the silent majority. I mean we’re talking about a huge chunk of our population, right? But I’m guessing the number of comments relates more to me posting this at 10:30 PM on the West Coast. : ) I started writing it at 8:00, but it took awhile.

      When you say, “They are rabidly intolerant and viciously insulting of ideas and ways of thinking that differ from theirs,” I find myself thinking the exact same thing could be said about conservatives. Is there a specific example you have in mind here?

      And I agree with Jessie that Hillary Clinton is a moderate. Many Democrats felt she was way too moderate and that’s why they supported Bernie Sanders. I think we’re fooling ourselves if we don’t understand how much sexism and played into this election.

      Take Elizabeth Warren for example. Many people said they hated Hillary, but if Elizabeth were running they would vote for her in a heartbeat. But you know what? When she was running for office, every horrible thing that was said about Hillary was said about her too.

      I think any woman with ambitions for the White House would have been torn apart. No matter who they were, we would have said, “Any woman but THAT woman.” Our collective misogyny runs deep.

    4. Where in the world were you during the Bush/Cheney reign??? I think they took the cake when it came to sending our military to die in Iraq. In fact, the international community considered it criminal.

      1. Oof. This may be terribly muddled, fair warning. I’ve come back to this comment because I’ve been thinking that it’s so easy to sound stupid on the internet and because of that, I think it’s so easy to be sound intolerant and dismissive of other people opinions. I think that may be why be people like R claim that liberals are intolerant of other peoples point of view. Why both sides of any argument think the other side is condescending or dismissive. Because it can be hard to put what we are thinking into words and we all slip up. But when I misspell “ballot” it’s because it was a typo, and when someone who disagrees with me misspells “ballot” it must be because they are dumb.

        I try to stop myself from thinking like this, but I think I fail more often than I want to admit.

        R said, “I don’t want someone who will send our militry to die in a foreign country for political reasons.”

        I don’t want to put words into R’s mouth, but if s/he had said, “I think Clinton will send out military to die in foreign countries in wars I think are wrong” . . . my first thought would not have been that the only people I can think of recently who have sent our soldiers into war for political reasons have all been Republicans.

        But maybe’s R’s comment was just an infelicitous attempt to put into words a legitimate fear about Clinton’s hawkishness? Is that any different, really, than misspelling ballot?

        And R, I am sorry if I misunderstood what you were trying to say. If you meant to suggest that a Republican administration was less likely to send our troops to war than a Democratic one, then, as a member of a military family I have to respectfully disagree with you.

  19. I don’t admit I voted for Trump because of shame but because of fear of democrats and liberals who feel the need to shout me down without even listening.

    1. I highly doubt that. Because Obama didn’t run a campaign demonizing half of the country. Obama didn’t incite violence at his campaign rallies. Meanwhile, Trump has never even apologized for trying to get five wrongfully accused teenagers executed. Conservatives might not have liked Obama. But I doubt they could have felt as scared and unsafe as so many Americans feel today.

      1. Hi Jessie,
        I just wanted to respectfully point out that your choice of words here in your first sentence confirm what Grace was saying. “I highly doubt that.” And then you ran off a list of reasons why she was wrong.

        Yesterday, I had a meeting at work where I was surrounded by people like me in tears, disappointed about the result. Except for one women. And she was very quiet throughout that whole meeting. I got curious. After the meeting, I thanked her for being respectful of our emotions and not gloating about the Trump victory. Then she said exactly what Grace said above. “This is how I felt 8 years ago.” So my next sentence was, “please say tell me more about that.” And then I listened. A LOT. I listened to several Republicans explain their votes. None of it changed my mind, but it helped me understand that it’s not as simple as demonizing Trump supporters as racists misogynistic idiots which is easy. Get curious. When you are ready.

        1. Hi Meagen — What I doubting was Grace’s claim that she knew how Hillary supporters were feeling based on the fact that she had been disappointed when Obama won. But Trump’s campaign has demonized so many already marginalized people in this country, and empowered many angry white voters. This outcome is truly scary for a lot of people. They fear for their physical safety. So you are right, I don’t know what Grace felt any more than she knows what Hillary supporters feel like. Yet sill, it is hard for me to imagine that she felt physically endangered when Obama won. If she did, I’d certainly be curious to know what made her feel so endangered.

          And believe me, I understand why so many voters were angry with the establishment and I think they have a right to be. The economy is not working for all of us, and that is a fact. We have lost many good jobs, some to globalization and probably many more to automation. While the line workers lose their paycheck, CEOs are rewarded — obscenely, in my humble opinion — for introducing efficiencies. This is messed up. I think many Trump supporters are angry for these and other legitimate reasons. I certainly don’t think all of Trump supporters are racists and sexists. But I do think there have been strains of racism and sexism in his campaign. As a white woman, I am disappointed and feel — dare I say — like Grace felt when Obama won. But for many immigrants, families of color, etc, this goes beyond way beyond disappointment.

    2. I’ve had my preferred presidential candidate lose 3 times before this. This is the 4th time for me (apparently I’m not very good at picking a winner).

      But I can tell you, I’ve never felt like this after any other loss. After other losses, people weren’t fearful in the same way. Trump is not a normal candidate, and it’s not a surprise that people aren’t reacting as if it’s normal election aftermath. There’s nothing normal about it.

      You may not like Obama, but when he was elected, did you fear that your friends and neighbors would be harassed, threatened, and kicked out of the country? Asking honestly. Can you see the difference between this election and the last several elections?

      1. Since I commented above, I want to respond to this as well. The Trump supporters I talked to yesterday who said they felt the same way 8 years ago had not yet experienced or witnessed the harassment people are being subjected to. In fact, they couldn’t name a single Trump policy. They only knew that their reasons were not supported by the Democratic party. They didn’t vote in support of racism, and they are also in denial about it. I personally witnessed my students being harrassed and threatened both personally and on social media yesterday. It was immediate. IMMEDIATE. The Trump supporters I talked to do NOT CARE ABOUT OUR FEELINGS. They directly admitted it. Full stop. Don’t care. Doesn’t concern them in the least. Their policy concerns are MUCH more important to them than our feelings about our rights and the rights of those we want to protect. They think we’re entirely too sensitive. It’s a hard time to be “too sensitive,” isn’t it? Especially since I don’t expect that will change for any of us.

  20. Just a reminder to those disappointed with the results of the election. We are, in fact, the majority. Hillary won the popular vote. We just didn’t get enough voters out to the polls. So we need to keep working to mobilize citizens and fight the Republicans ongoing efforts to restrict voting access. Let’s aim for a record turnout in the historically low-turnout midterms and take back the Senate. Let’s organize at the local level to regain control of the state legislatures that have so gerrymandered districts that it’s made it impossible for Democrats to win control of the House. And finally, let’s make Trump a one-term president. Remember, we are the majority. We just need to make ourselves heard.

    1. Big take-aways:

      The time to register to vote is not before an election, it’s right after – motivation is high right now.

      Don’t worry about 2020 now, get informed and get out for the 2018 mid-terms.

      Right now, make sure you have the name, address and phone number of every legislator that you vote for on your refrigerator (or in your phone). Federal, State, Town, your school board. Even if you didn’t vote for that person, THEY don’t know that. Make sure you know how to get in touch with them, quickly. They work for you.

    2. Just following up, here are the raw numbers:
      – The Democratic party won the Presidential Election by about 1.4 million votes.
      – The Democratic party won the House of Representatives by close to a million votes.
      – The Democratic party won the Senate by about half a million votes.

  21. Gabby,
    You never cease to amaze me with your valuable, insightful and brave(!) posting about this election and other political/social issues. You are an inspiration. This post was so right on that all that I can say about it is ditto X1,000,000!!! Thank you for putting yourself out there. I know that you are not in the majority among others of your faith. Your courage is simply inspiring. You are doing so much good by raising such important points for the whole Design Mom community to consider. Thank you so very much!!!

  22. Gabby, I have read you for years. We more frequently disagree than agree, politically. And yet I still read you. And I listen to NPR. And I have never turned on FoxNews.

    I live in a very red part of Ohio. The fact that you talk down to me, to assume I am ill-informed, or in an echo chamber, or a red bubble? Why do you assume this? It’s a poor and incorrect assumption.

    It’s easy to cast people who disagree with us as less intelligent or informed. And to see the sensational examples of supporters in our media feeds only bolsters that notion. But it’a prideful and arrogant to make that assumption. The older I get, the more I realize smart, thoughtful people are found in all walks of life.

    Everyone I know who voted for Trump voted for him in spite of much.

          1. I didn’t vote for Trump, but as a fiscal conservative, I feel like liberals look down on me. I often feel like those that vote Democratic automatically assume my IQ is lower than theirs simply because I dislike big, over reaching government and I have a greater faith in private enterprise and the individual.

    1. I’m truly sorry that I talked down to you. I certainly didn’t try to. When I mentioned bubbles, it was me acknowledging that I live in a bubble myself and understand that I’m not seeing every perspective. I think we all live in bubbles. It wasn’t an accusation or insult.

      I also definitely didn’t try to cast anyone as less intelligent or ill-informed. That would indeed be prideful and arrogant. Please help me see where you are getting that, so I can edit the post. I feel like I totally missed something here.

      1. Kristen: “In spite of much” but how much is too much? I think that is the line in the sand here. Trump voters have their reasons, but so do Hillary supporters when saying those reasons can never be enough. There is only one type of Trump supporter that I truly feel compassion for and that’s women who felt bullied by their churchs to support Trump. I think perhaps Hillary supporters are giving Trump supporters more credit than they think when they say, “maybe they just don’t understand what it feels like for your life to feel threatened in the country you love. Maybe they just don’t understand what it feels like to have your American-ness denied because of your religion. Maybe they just don’t understand what it means to be a refugee or an immigrant. (want to talk about actual hard choices). Maybe they just don’t understand what it means to feel that only white Christians people are entitled to safety and prosperity. Maybe they just don’t understand that it is a privledge to feel you can vote based on a single issue like gun control or abortion rights. I know that we could all use some time in each other’s shoes just to get a clearer sense of our own limitations, but I proudly declare my own limit to be hate–and it’s shocking and upsetting to me and many that we don’t all share that same limit. I will not accept a voice (however well intentioned or reasoned or struggled) that takes up a chorus with hate. It is not condesending to question whether or not Trump supporters have tried to hear his voice as a minority might. We’re saying “I know you’re good people, so you must have just missed this bit where he said all those horrible things and is accused of all those horrible things.” It’s gracious actually–and, sadly, fruitless.

        1. I agree with Kristen and E’s statement (below). But Kile, I wanted to address your comment because it comes up on a daily basis, and I have addressed it here in past posts and also on Gabrielle’s FB page, but clearly it is dismissed because it keeps coming up.

          The issue is this: as a Roman Catholic voter, it is my privilege to vote as I see fit for my family. The most important issue to me and other Roman Catholics is the right to life issue. ***Incorrectly, this is seen by the majority of non-Catholics as you yourself clearly stated as a single issue. Right to life issue is NOT a single issue FOR US. It is the very foundation ALL other issues are laid on. That is what we believe. To hear every single day how we voted on a single issue is unbelievably grating to our very souls.
          The right to life was not the only reason I did not think Hillary was the best choice of the 2 flawed candidates, and others have already touched on some of my same reasons, but it was the MAIN reason.

          ****But, I know this post as well as my other posts will be overlooked and someone else will come and say I voted on one issue because they fail to understand where we come from. Failing to open our minds to understand each other is the problem with our nation. And posts like Gabrielle’s only prove the point that we do not listen to each other.

          1. Cathy, I’m sincerely sorry to hear that when you bring up the issue of abortion, people “fail to understand where you come from”.

            Abortion is obviously an emotionally-laden topic. And it should be. We’re talking about life and death here. Catholics are not the only people who see this as a foundational issue.

            But sometimes I think the emotional-ness of the topic prevents us from being practical and making effective laws. I mean, there are real, proven ways to reduce the number of abortions. In Colorado, they started providing free or easily accessible birth control and abortions went down.

            So it seems like that is a program that right-to-life advocates would be really be happy about. But it’s the kind of program typically promoted by Democratic candidates who are pro-choice. And in my personal life, I’ve found many friends who won’t consider any candidate who says they are pro-choice. Even if that candidate will enact proven ways to reduce abortions.

            That doesn’t make sense to me and I wish I understood more. It’s like people are more concerned about being on the side that’s anti-abortion, then actually reducing abortions. I’m sure that’s not true, but sometimes it seems like that.

            I also feel misunderstood on this topic. I consider myself pro-choice, but I always fight for programs that will reduce unwanted pregnancies. Being pro-life does not mean being pro-abortion. Does that make sense?

          2. Gabby, You do not see the link between birth-control and abortion, but google what PP says about them. Look at history. When birth control came on the scene, abortion became the next logical step. Many of us see this connection, so supporting free birth control is really not doing what what we hope. (Please send followup comments so I know to come back otherwise, with all these comments, I will never find this thread.) Please don’t think that I’m saying women should be pregnant and barefoot in the kitchen as that is what is the natural assumption for many who are unaware of the links of birth control and abortion. There are natural, FREE ways that are more effective than birth control at preventing pregnancy and they don’t cause depression or have links to cancer.

          3. Cathy, I understand what you’re saying because I feel exactly the same way- and I am not Catholic. This blog post and most of the comments are so disappointing. The degree to which we misunderstand and disrespect each other is downright depressing. I am a Christian and I’m praying for our country. And I really think I need to stay off the Internet….

      2. I agree with a lot of what Kristen said. I don’t think that you intentionally talked down to anyone, but I feel that by the words you chose to use, you were definitely implying certain things. Such as, “But I can bet it won’t involve reading Breitbart or the Drudge Report or watching Fox News or Ann Coulter, or listening to Rush Limbaugh.” That is an assumption. I am very conservative, and I don’t read or watch any of that on a regular basis. Sure, I have watched segments on Fox News before, or read things from Rush Limbaugh, but it doesn’t mean I automatically agree with it! I don’t even know what Breitbart is. I generally like to read and watch a variety of different points of view. I flipped between all the news channels on election night and throughout the day yesterday. There is poison on all of those channels. I don’t feel any of the media can be trusted at this point to tell an honest and fair story representative of ALL Americans. I have seen hate spewed on Facebook and elsewhere from Trump supporters and Hillary supporters alike- both before and after the election. I also agree with Betsy’s comment below that there has been a lot of condescension for the last several years. If my opinions on gay marriage or immigration differ at all from the left, then I am seen as just plain wrong, as well as ignorant, racist, bigoted, etc. I read this in an article just today: “Now, before the chat threads blow up below this article, I am not denying that some Trump supporters are racist. Of course. But some Muslims are terrorists. The point is NOT ALL. I’ve seen the clips of bigoted slurs being thrown out at Trump rallies. But, as a TV producer, when I watch the footage aired, there aren’t a tons of incidents. It’s a couple each time, played many, many times over. But if a group of twenty idiotic Trump supporters yell ethnic slurs, is the entire stadium “racist” by association? No. If a Black Lives Matters supporter says it’s “open season on whites” is that a true representation of the movement? No. Should I be viewed with suspicion because I am a Muslim and some are terrorists? No. The worst outcome of the election is that we have each been reduced to a series of broad labels that no longer reflect who we are. Mexican. White. Republican. Immigrant. Muslim. We may try to look at people as “labels” but we’ll never truly see them because THEY do not look at their own lives & families as labels. If, in the misery of this morning’s election hangover, we choose to continue to refer to Trump supporters as one collective “Them” I think that is as offensive as anything else I’ve heard in this election cycle and as ungracious as anything we feared from Trump supporters in the defeat we assumed would be theirs.”
        I think what people are saying when they say let’s come together is that it is going to take BOTH sides reaching out and trying to understand each other if we are going to heal. As a matter of fact, it is not just the Trump supporters that have said that, Hillary and President Obama said it as well.

        1. You say… ‘but if a group of twenty idiotic Trump supporters yell ethnic slurs, is the entire stadium “racist” by association? No. If a Black Lives Matters supporter says it’s “open season on whites” is that a true representation of the movement? ‘.

          Neither of these analogies work because Trump is not just another ‘supporter’. Trump is the candidate making the racist and sexist comments. Support for Trump is support for his racist and sexist views.

    2. Totally. I am an independent who didn’t vote for either candidate, but my friends on the right have been complaining about condescension from the left for years. This election I have really seen it and it’s so arrogant. And it advances absolutely nothing.

      I’ve read a lot of, “Explain to me why you voted this way.” No one has to explain their vote. Maybe a lot of people want to tell you all about their politics, but no has to justify it to anyone.

      1. Betsy,

        If you don’t care what I think, and you probably don’t, then of course you don’t have to explain why you voted the way you did. I don’t think that the average Trump voters hate black people, or hate Muslims, or think poor people should just die if they can’t afford doctors. I think they just don’t care. I think they voted in their own self-interest in spite of knowing the harm it would cause other people. I am really disappointed in them. I thought most Americans were better than this.

        If the people who voted for Trump want me to think otherwise, then yeah, they do need to explain their vote to me. But I perfectly understand why they don’t want to try and why they don’t want to tell me that they voted for Trump.

    3. I just reread her post and fail to see where she is condescending to Trump voters.

      Also, the rally cry that all Democrats are elitists is just as factually wrong as all Republicans are unintelligent Or uninformed . There’s only episodic evidence. “My cousin said that her sister said….”.

      Also, what hardships did Trump voters encounter?

    4. I appreciated this comment. A conservative who lives in a very blue county in a very blue state (NY), I rely on the BBC and public radio for my news. My vote for third party candidate Evan McMullin came from my inability to stomach either of the unappealing candidates. But having voted with my party in the past, I have very much felt the derision from Democrats who can’t understand how any reasonable person could vote Republican, assuming we are mindless bigots who live to follow the Right Wing Media

      1. Myself, I see a big difference between voting Republican and voting for Trump. Most of my family votes Republican and always has. I don’t think they are terrible people. I am heartsick though, to think that they voted for Donald Trump and that he is going to be President.

  23. I am still ill and don’t think it will go away soon. This is the second time in recent years that my president has been voided by the electorial college. What about my vote? It is time to change this system to popular vote elections. I haven’t been this scared since nixon was elected to a second term. And I wasn’t wrong about that either.

    1. I feel the same way, Karin. The first presidential election I could vote in was Bush v Gore. Gore losing the electoral college was so disappointing but this time around it feels even worse. Trump was right. The system is rigged.

      1. Ditto. And there is a movement called the Popular Vote Movement that is trying to bring the Electoral College vote in line with the popular vote. It is building state by state. My state (MA) has already voted for it, as have ten others.

  24. Thank for sharing and sticking up for the good, Gabby.
    Here’s how I feel- if you weren’t sick yesterday, you didn’t have that much to lose in this election. It feels to me like people who voted for Trump didn’t have much to lose. What were they really at risk of losing when it came down to it? Money?

    What was I at risk of losing? My wife, the rights to my future kids, my safety, the safety of kids born to two moms. I don’t think there’s anything more important than your actual life and your family. Sorry, but jobs and money come second to that. For people of color the fear for their safety is of course exponentially more than mine as a white person.

    I sobbed uncontrollably on and off yesterday. My wife and I took turns crying and comforting each other. How long will we be able to stay married? When we have kids, if something happens to one of us, will the kids be taken away from us if not biologically ours? I don’t want to have to jump through hoops to have a family. I can’t believe that in many states the non biological parent still has to adopt the child even if the parents are legally married. Even though it’s state by state right now, I fear the worst with Trump, and especially Pence- at the helm of the country. Yes, marriage equality is now a constitutional right, but there is a chance they could work to overturn it. After this election, anything is possible. It’s the most disgusting feeling to know that you and your children will be considered second class citizens and not afforded the same rights. Sometimes it seems crazy to me that I’m sobbing over children I don’t even have yet, but I want that life so bad that I don’t care. It matters. It matters.

    Needless to say, I am way more fearful for my sisters and brothers of color and those who are Muslim. I’m vowing to do as much as I can to stick up for them and use my white privilege to their advantage.

  25. Your not alone! My son when he woke up asked who was the president and I told him he cried and asked if we could buy tickets to Germany. I am ashamed for our country. How did we even get this far? Hopefully, this will wake up the nation and come 4 years from now we will be much smarter.

  26. I live in a blue city (Asheville) in a sea of red in the mountains of western NC. To say that we are grieving in this community is an understatement. Shell-shocked is a more appropriate description. When George W Bush won – we were disappointed but it wasn’t like this. If Romney had won in 2012, we would have been disappointed but not in despair. Trump being elected president feels like a massive blow to everything we hold dear and true in this country. That a bully could say the things he has said, PROUDLY said, UNAPOLOGETICALLY said; and the masses elect him to represent our nation, to lead us…well, it’s terrifying.

    My husband and I were proud Bernie supporters through the primary but when Clinton won the nom and Trump won the Republican nom – well, it was obvious we would vote for Clinton, to keep Trump and his vile rhetoric out of office.
    Yesterday felt like a bomb had been dropped. We went through the day crying, in shock, not far different than how we spent 9/11. Glued to the TV and social media and the NY Times and trying to figure out how the hell this happened. Who is angry enough to bring this on our nation? Turns out, it’s the other half of the country.

    We have a young daughter who asked us why we were so sad yesterday. We explained that the new president was not a “kind man” – she’s only 3 so we kept it simple. I am fearful for what this means for her – the hateful message he spews about all minorities. His stance on climate change and fracking and “drill baby drill” – what environmental set backs will we endure?

    Today is a new day. We are moving through the stages of grief. Safe to say that today we are in the anger phase. We have decided to make monthly contributions to the ACLU for the entirety of Trump’s campaign. We will be involved. If nothing else, this is a wake up call.

    Thanks for your thoughts, Gabby.

  27. Thank you so much Gabrielle. I love your point of view and that you share it so open-heartedly. I for one am not for unity. That’s hogwash. I am not going to promote civil war either though. I live at the very heart of the insulated blue bubble that is the west coast, in Santa Cruz, CA. I would have to travel hundreds of miles to see deep red. I think I have become complacent during the Obama years and even during the later Bush years when my children were young, I was sleep deprived and it seemed like the damage had already been done. I mourned deeply yesterday but came out of the fog with a plan of action. 1) Reach out to all those around me in real life and cyberspace of differing points of view. Unlike many on my social media accounts, I refuse to unfriend Trump supporters. They will have to see my thoughts, turn away, or unfriend me. 2) Call out the many micro-aggressions I see throughout the day instead of letting someone else do the work for me. 3)Fight, fight, fight any institutional wrongdoing or destructive change coming out of Washington. The Right had their Tea Party during the Obama years, my daily mantra and battle cry will be “What have you done to smash the white hetero-patriachy today?” Both for myself and those around me. Thank you Trump voters for giving me back my fight and giving me something to work against. I have all the power of the protesters in the streets at my back.

      1. I immediately sent off two emails that I hadn’t wanted to bother with before: one to SiriusXM pointing out that most of there specialty music stations feature white men and on all stations they play more male musicians than female. The other email was to an independent magazine with a two page, glaringly white female contributor spread. I had already decided not to renew, but sent them an email telling them why not. Also, I called out a playground bully at my son’s school yesterday. I felt so much better after these things and it gave me energy to move forward.

  28. I didn’t read your whole post, but I saw your question, “What will you do?” Yesterday morning, when I saw the outcome, I wrote a long post and then deactivated my facebook account. Why?

    Because as the white mother of a black son (who, why yes, I carried for 9 months, labored and birthed), I need to stop wasting time. I need to get into my neighborhood, my city, my country, and world and engage people in a real way. I don’t know what this will look like, but for months my husband and I have been talking about what we can do to combat this hate and fear. But, that’s just it, we’ve been talking and feeling outraged, but not acting. And, yesterday demonstrated that racism & sexism continues to exist and is more deep seeded than I believed.

    Yesterday showed me again that it really doesn’t matter if my son is polite, beautiful, and kind, in our America, he will first be judged by the color of his skin. And, while he has the most beautiful skin, this still breaks my heart.

    My boy and I have had quite a journey in his 11 years and part of that journey allowed us to meet President Obama. At that meeting, the President shared his often repeated phrase, “Keep dreaming big dreams.” So, yesterday morning, I also sent President Obama a letter. Because his election did change the country and we won’t stop dreaming. But, yesterday demonstrated that we need to continue to act and walk in peace and love.

  29. Last May, my husband and I visited Mexico City. They have a beautiful holocaust museum there. At the beginning, they explain how we need these museums so atrocities like these won’t happen again (they had rooms that started with the holocaust & then went through things happening in the recent past & now, like Boko Haram). The last room was two looping videos on the wall of Donald Trump, saying that Mexico sends us their rapists and murderers. Words lit up on the wall – words like, racist, intolerant, and bigot.

    I was so embarrassed and couldn’t believe this man was the presidential nominee for the Republican Party, but I thought, there is NO WAY he’ll win. We are way too smart for that to happen.

    I am profoundly, deeply disappointed. I think Hillary’s demise had EVERYTHING to do with the conservative radio heads. In fact, 8 years ago, I tried an experiment. I listened to Sean Hannity just to see what it was like. I listened for about 4 minutes until I was too sick to listen to more. He referred to Hillary Clinton as the devil in different ways 4 times during those 4 minutes. When I can’t understand the vitriol against her, I remember that.

    Love your thoughts. I’m grateful to follow you.

    1. I agree about the conservation talk radio heads. On election day I listened for a few minutes to Savage Nation, I think his name is Michael Savage. I was appalled at his paranoid and fear mongering rhetoric, but it explained so much to me. It also made me literally almost sick, and really anxious and I can’t imagine listening to something like that every day. It would color your view of the world, make it such a dark and scary place. There is nothing like that outside of conservation talk radio to even compare it to – everyone should listen at some point to understand.

  30. I’m struggling with so many things about this election, but what bothers me the most is that Americans chose to reward an admitted sexual assaulter who mocked the disabled and said racist things with the presidency. What kind of example are we setting by rewarding this kind of behavior? I feel so disheartened because I thought we were better than that.

  31. I’m a moderate conservative who wrote in a presidential candidate because I didn’t like either of the major party options for a wide variety of reasons. But I think that the liberal perspective of “You right-leaning voters aren’t as well educated or as well informed or as exposed to the great big world as we left-leaning voters are” is one of the reasons that Trump won. I would highly recommend the book “Hillbilly Elegy” and this article at the American Conservative: It explains at least some of the Americans who found Trump most compelling and why–and I think it implicates all of us who have some measure of privilege and have overlooked poor, white Americans for a long time. (This is not to say they’re the only group of people who have been overlooked or who we should see and acknowledge and support and love. It’s just a look at the people who supported Trump in large measure.)

    As I’ve chatted with friends–both liberal and conservative–I’ve realized that part of this election is a kind of referendum on Obama’s leadership. Many people have said that they feel like the policies to come out of his administration have been heavy-handed. A friend (who is Muslim) told me, “I have to work harder and longer, which means less time with my children, because I have to be able to pay for my insurance premiums which increased 40%.” Couple that with the tax hike many of us saw at the beginning of this year, and some people feel more strapped–in serious ways–than they were before. And I also wonder why it’s never Obama’s fault that the bickering in Washington has been so tough and disappointing. He’s an eloquent orator, I agree, but he’s not been a great force for drawing people to smart compromise. And he’s enacted an agenda that hasn’t been the kind of transparent, clear policymaking he promised. This NYT article is an interesting look at this shift in his approach, and it runs with the subhead: “Mr Obama will leave the White House as one of the most prolific authors of major regulations in presidential history.”

    Maybe some Americans think that’s the president’s job, but it’s a definite departure in my view from how government should work.

    Most important, I’m praying fervently for our country, for those who feel scared, for the most vulnerable among us, and for unity at some point among us. And I’m continuing to teach our kids, 7 and 4, that their words hold power and should be used thoughtfully, truthfully and in great love; and that they have power–and a responsibility–to see people in need and help meet those needs.

  32. Gabby–

    The first thing that scares me is having a bully as our president, especially one that is not introspective and can’t handle any kind of criticism whatsoever. I very much worry what he will do when he backlashes. Ugh.

    The second thing that scares me is our environment and how it will get trashed. Somehow, people just do not seem to understand that if we don’t have a planet, we have NOTHING.

    Third, and this is the one I’ve been thinking about the most. How is it that some of my educated girlfriends voted for him and are happy about it? This is the one I have the hardest time wrapping my head around. However, yesterday I had an epiphany. These women are not in happy marriages. These women don’t know how they are supposed to be treated. These women think that Trump’s behavior is normal. This realization made me even MORE sad than Trump winning.

    A California friend just sent me this:
    TRUMPOOZLED: the hateful ignorant ideas that got him elected were only a ruse and he will actually be thoughtful, sane and make good changes to our political system.

    TRUMPATIZED: the state of disbelief and depression leaving one unable to process what we have just done, what it means and how to respond.

    I am taking a tiny bit of solace in the popular vote, the fact that I live in a blue state (CO) and that Prop 67 in CA was voted in.

    High collective sigh partnered with a few tears.

  33. I didn’t vote for either candidate. Lots of people on both sides told me I was throwing away my vote – I wasn’t. It’s my vote. It’s my voice. I’m wasn’t letting any hyper-emotional people on either wing sway me. Instead, I got busy. In the last three months I’ve organized a canned food drive for our food bank, a book drive for an impoverished elementary school, and a diaper drive for refugees. My kids are in the process of choosing a child to sponsor from overseas.

    We live in the greatest country in the world. It’s not perfect, it’s not heavenly, but it is the nation I call home and the people who live here are overall, pretty great. That said, I LOOK FOR THE GOOD.

    Look for the good in your world and you will see it. Don’t see it? GO MAKE THE GOOD IN YOUR WORLD! Complaining about the government is a luxury a lot of people don’t have. We have access to education. Most of us have access to clean water. Find a problem in your community or somewhere you care about and get to work! I can only control myself, my attitude, and my actions.

    The government is staffed with fallible humans. The government is not designed to save us; we can only save ourselves.

    Thank you for being open to conversation, Gabby.

    1. I’ve seen some vitriol directed at people who voted for third party candidtates. As if Gary John’s 2 % would have all voted for Hillary. I blame the people who didn’t vote for the fact that we have Donald Trump for President. Yours was just one of many, many, many votes that weren’t cast, so it’s not all your fault. But it is as much your fault as it the fault of anyone who voted for him. You share the blame. One teeny, tiny, one million millionth of it. You had two candidates to vote for and you didn’t vote against him.

      That said, thank you for doing what you can to make this world a better place.

      1. I got vitriol from both sides. I couldn’t vote for him, and I couldn’t vote for her. If you want to blame me for why Donald Trump is president, you can. I am not interested in blame. Blame advances nothing. We can probably agree that we need better candidates. We need to attract better people to politics.

        To clarify: not caring about your opinion of my opinions does not mean I do not respect your opinion. I celebrate that we are all different and we believe based on our own lives and experiences. My continual hope is that we can come together as a people to improve our communities and our world.

    2. Betsy,

      The one vote wasted is the one not cast. :)
      I love your post. It makes me so happy. I always do more charitable work during this holiday season, but you’ve inspired me to make this more routine. I’d love to pick your brain about how you got started!

  34. I too have been discouraged by the election results. I voted for Hillary, and not because I thought she was the “lesser of two evils.” I voted for her because she is more qualified. I disagree with Trump on many things, including his racism, sexism and blatant disregard for human decency. However, I am very disappointed by the protests and riots happening in Oakland. Why do small business owners–who in all likelihood voted for Hillary–have to continually bear the brunt of rage? I’m ashamed. I am determined to bear this loss with magnanimity and grace. I will not protest, peacefully or aggressively. I will respect the election process.

  35. Gabrielle,

    I know this has been hard for you. I have tried to focus with my family on the following talk from Gordon B. Hinkley.

    I shared it with my children, friends, and family. We need to focus on the good and positive in each other and especially our country. The constant negativity that has permeated the news and social media is toxic. It ultimately destroys the good that is around us.

    I appreciated President Obama’s speech yesterday. We need to come together for the good of our country. Letting the divide grow will not help us as individuals or as a nation.

    Let us move forward with greater love for one another. It starts in our homes and families.

  36. I came across some of your social media content…… Yep, you were intolerant. Gasp…… Typical leftist. Living in an echo chamber. Personally, I took my child and enjoyed a Bernie rally. Anyway, there is a lot of wearing of ashes and sack cloth going on.

    1. I put a lot of stuff on Facebook, so I’m sure there’s some intolerance there, but you bring up a good point. Do we have to tolerate hate? As for “ashes and sack cloth” I disagree. I think there are real reasons that people are fearful right now.

      1. Gabby, for what it’s worth I respect that you are trying to have an open and honest conversation about an explosive topic. It’s emotional, but hang in there, sister. You’re doing great.

    2. Because the Right embraced Obama? I believe the minute after he was elected his 2nd term Republicans swore to shut down the government. Welp, they certainly kept that promise huh? Not nominating a Supreme Court judge? They were even talking of blocking ANY nominees if Hillary was elected.

      Or the way his family was subjected to blant racism while in office? The family depicted as apes? And someone’s tasteful Halloween costume at a football game of Obama with a noose around his neck?

      Also, I will never cheer for a man who mocks a disabled man on stage. I will not stand for “locker room” talk.

  37. Ugh, I have SO many thoughts, many of them wildly disorganized. I quickly moved through the first stage of grief on to anger. And a lot of my anger is directed at Hillary Clinton (for whom I voted). I think she should have had this one in the bag but she ran a crap campaign and made lots of bad decisions and failed to reach voters she could have reached. I felt like she recycled Democratic talking points she’s been using for the last 30 years (trotting out free higher education just to spice it up) and that just wasn’t going to cut it this time. I worked in the Clinton State Department and it was so apparent that she valued loyalty from her inner circle above all else. That inner circle was mostly concerned with protecting the aura of HRC and rarely dissented and I think some fresh views and dissent could have helped her (and us). I am also extremely angry at the Americans who are saying, “Well, that’s it, I’m moving overseas.” Not only is that a pathetic attitude, but what about the people who can’t move overseas who will be hurt by Trump’s policies? Do we not owe it to our fellow citizens to stay and fight for what’s right, to engage our elected representatives to work for us? Also, if you move overseas you still have to pay US taxes–do you not care what your tax dollars are spent on? If you’re interested in more humor (of a sort), here is a soundtrack to the stages of grief:

    1. “I am also extremely angry at the Americans who are saying, “Well, that’s it, I’m moving overseas.” Not only is that a pathetic attitude, but what about the people who can’t move overseas who will be hurt by Trump’s policies?”

      Fair point. Well said.

      1. I’d like to add to that. I did move overseas. Twenty years ago. Here is a hard earned lesson: you don’t escape America by moving overseas. America comes to you. The choices made by American voters profoundly affect people’s lives thousands of miles away, often in the most tragic of ways, often in places that never make the news. So I beg you: stay. Stay and take responsibility. Stay and fight. Because even if you were an HRC voter, you are still a tax payer, you still are paying into the system (as have I, mind). Its a matter of owning it. And not shifting the blame onto the people who “voted the wrong way” whatever that means. In Germany, there is a great word called Vergangenheitsbewältigung. It means, essentially, confronting and owning and acknowledging responsibility for the past. And its something expected of all Germans (that’s not to say that Germany doesn’t have its own problems. It does.its just to say that Vergangenheitsbewältigung is a national project. Its something everyone is made to participate in. What I guess I am saying here is…whether you voted for HRC or DT…you are nevertheless a part of a system that has done great harm to the planet. So stay. Stay and fix it. No matter how angry you are. Stay. Fight. Make it right.

  38. Thank you for this comforting post. I did myself a favor and shut down my Facebook account for a while. I grew up in rural PA and now live in a liberal city on the East Coast. I couldn’t bear what I was reading anymore and felt turning in-toward my family, my dogs, my neighborhood, my child’s school, the people within my physical reach–that felt important. I opted to work from home yesterday and over my lunch break, picked up some meds for a dear friend who is going through serious illness and also some groceries for her and we visited for a bit. She shared with me that hearing the news that Trump won reminded her of when she heard she had breast cancer. She had this immediate and heavy feeling that there was utterly nothing she could do to change that fact. We cried, talked about mothering, about our families, our hopes for our children and each other, her hopes for her grandchildren, and how important it is to have hope. But for a day I let myself feel heavy limbed and laden with the grief I was experiencing. I went to bed very early and slept for 11 hours. Today I got information on volunteering for Planned Parenthood in my city and also reached out to a local organization that helps children in need. I am gratefully surrounded by people of all ethnicities, skin colors, religions, and backgrounds who seem to share a similar moral code that my family shares. I choose to turn toward those people and turn off social media and other media for a while as I determine how my community can go forward and heal from this trauma. xo

    1. “She shared with me that hearing the news that Trump won reminded her of when she heard she had breast cancer. She had this immediate and heavy feeling that there was utterly nothing she could do to change that fact.”

      I know that heavy feeling. I think that story is a really compelling description.

  39. Oh my goodness, thank you for putting words to so many of my feelings. After having a mostly sleepless night on election night, my husband took the day off to spend time with me and my daughter. We both knew it wouldn’t be a productive day for much, so we took our daughter out to the park and then drowned our sorrows in Mexican Coke and tacos. My husband spoke with a few of the patrons in Spanish and since I couldn’t understand, I just looked into everyone’s eyes and tried to say, “Sorry for what half of our country just did” with mine. Half way through the day, I still couldn’t shake the gloom so my husband and I decided that while we don’t have control over what is happening with the presidency, we do have control over our actions. We spent the afternoon brainstorming ways that we can help others in our community. It helped lift my spirits a bit and I’m ready to get to work.

  40. I voted third party and viewed it as a vote of protest, but I typically identify more with conservatives.

    So I just want to say this: If Trump (or any other future president) actively promotes intolerance or inequality towards any group based on race, religion, sexual orientation, or gender, I will stand with you. I will not be part of any “silent majority,” and I feel safe saying many other conservatives will do the same.

  41. I have never felt this sick and distraught about any public event, including 9/11. I fantasize about Trump becoming incapacitated or at least becoming mired in a prolonged, messy divorce (which he’s due for), so that he is distracted from pursuing his hateful, bigoted, short-sighted and economically ruinous aims. I am an immigration lawyer, so I foresee a massive shift in my work. Instead of helping professional workers get green cards, will I switch over to deportation defense where all the work will be?

    For all of those who demonize illegal immigrants, asylum seekers, and refugees, have you ever really known one? Have you personally ever had to struggle and make desperate choices for the physical safety of your own family? Do you consider yourself

    I get that Hillary Clinton was a deeply flawed candidate (and a woman to boot!). But to say, well, they’re both liars, they’re both greedy, whatever, one is as bad as the other, is to let yourself off the hook for a ruinous decision. I think our nation will pay for this mistake.

    1. I voted for Trump. Perhaps your life experience caused you to believe the worst case scenario if Trump won. My life experience caused me to believe the worst case scenario if Hillary won.
      I know if Hillary had won I would feel there was no hope for the USA.
      Under the Obama administration racism has grown to new heights. He has fueled this fire. He has made white america feel ashamed. He has made the blacks feel justified. The problem with this is violence. He being the first black president could have rallied us and, united us with the spirit of forgiveness and, love.

      I should point out here that many think I am from the middle east.
      I lived in Iran when I was a teenager. Many Iranians believed me to be one of them too. When they understood I was an american the hate was evident by many. I had rocks and, mud thrown at me. They yelled at me,
      “GO HOME!” Truth is I never internalized the hatred. In fact I found many of the people to be kind, loving, and curious. I loved living in Iran.

      Too, I have childhood memories of living in Germany. My father was US Army. The german children hated the american children. They cursed us, pulled knives out at us and, threatened us. I know what it is to feel racism.
      I grew up in the deep south. I seen what black history week did every year in our schools. Immediately the school would separate into color. Because the black children would be so full of hate. Fights broke out. Anger and, fear would blanket the school. We are the offspring of those that caused this ugly hate. We didn’t have a choice in this yet, hate continues on.

      Hate will always be with us. But, hating the hater will only enrage him or, her. In this respect I wish Obama had a spirit like Martin Luther king Jr.
      Imagine where our country could be today “if only.”

      I do believe the majority want the same things in this country. We just don’t have the same ideas of how to accomplish our goals.

      Hillary divided the country with her basket of deplorables comment. Too, trying to divide further by calling those that didn’t support her all those hater names. You can’t be heard when you are hating on the very people you would like to change.

      I want America to be great. I want America to be the place where all are welcome. I want love to reign. I didn’t hear what you heard from Trump. Here is the truth. I think most of campaign speeches are hot air. Rarely does a president meet his campaign agenda. Why? Because as Hillary was caught saying…..I have two different agenda’s, one in private, one in the public. Notice I didn’t use quotation marks. Yet, she had one message for the masses and, one behind closed doors. Honestly, I believe they all say what they think will get them elected.

      Did you hear Trump’s acceptance speech? How quickly he changed his agenda? Now he is about rebuilding our inner cities and, roads? Jobs?
      Did you hear he wants to make ALL of us proud? Did you hear he loves America? I did.

      It is my hope that Trump will love all Americans equally. That he will be hard at work to bring us all together.

      I do believe we all deserve freedom of speech, religion, sexual orientation, pro-choice etc…. Oh, along with these freedoms, let’s add compassion.

      What I am against, late term partial birth abortions.
      Why aren’t all mothers fighting for this?

      More than anything I feel Obama’s policies have brought our country to a new low. Racism, violence, distrust, fear, national debt, are all soaring under his leadership. I don’t want his legacy to live on. It is certain Hillary wanted to continue in his footsteps.

      I am part Cherokee. I am sad that the Indians were treated so poorly. I am sad that I never knew my grandfather who was a half breed. I know he could have told me so many interesting stories. But, more than that I know he would have taught me love and, tolerance. Because, that is what he taught my mother. My mother felt discriminated against too, as she looked full blooded Cherokee. But, she spoke with love.

      Never in my house were there racial jokes or, slurs. We were never taught to hate. This is where the fabric of our country needs mending. The parents of our offspring need to teach love, forgiveness, and compassion.

      I am a tongue talking Holy Ghost filled Apostolic. I believe Jesus is the one true God incarnate. I believe God gives us all free will. We shouldn’t try to govern one’s personal belief. Now that doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t share our belief. After all freedom of speech is a right.

      I do believe abortion and homosexuality are a sin. I believe this because I believe the Bible is the inspired word of God. The Bible teaches that these are sins. Yet, I believe hate is a sin. Now, that said we can hate sin. But!
      Never the sinner!
      Truth is we all fall short of the the Glory of God. We are all sinners. God doesn’t rate sins in greater to lesser format. All sin will keep us separated from God. Knowing this I am constantly judging myself, trying to be all God calls me to be. First to love God with all my heart, mind, and, soul. Second and for this discussion, of the most importance, Love my neighbor as myself.

      1. Update: WSJ Trump considering keeping parts of Obamacare.

        See what I mean? They never keep their promises. :)
        I read too, Pence said, Trump will not be deporting any immigrants that are currently in the country. This was on MSN.
        Trump isn’t going to prevent immigrants either. Only plans to investigate immigrants thoroughly before they enter.

        We are three days out from election and, his agenda has suddenly softened.
        Don’t you just love politics. :)

      2. Betty:
        “Under the Obama administration racism has grown to new heights.”
        Yes, I think you are right about this.

        “He has fueled this fire. He has made white america feel ashamed.”
        Obama has put up with so many insults, let people question his birth certificate, say nothing when people call his wife a gorilla, and more. And he has done so with a grace I cannot imagine. He has done nothing to make white america feel ashamed, though I, as a white American, am ashamed of the way he has been treated.

        “He has made the blacks feel justified.”
        What exactly is it that you think Obama has made “the blacks feel justified” to do that is wrong? I really want to understand your perspective.


        1. Jessie,

          When one is in public office they will be subjected to haters. If President Obama were to address the Michelle comment he would only abase himself.

          The birth certificate issue is more political fodder.

          President Obama has the power to bring unity to the the issue of race in this country. If you google the issue of racism in this country under the Obama administration you will find millions of articles to read. Read not only your favorite news sites. Read the heart felt words of the people. News comes with bias under any site you choose. If we want to be informed we must listen to all sides of the story.

          Though I did not vote for President Obama, I was excited for him to be the first black president. I think he carries himself with dignity. I enjoy just watching him walk, and, talk, and smile. Yet, he had the opportunity to leave a legacy like no other. He alone in the line of presidents was uniquely a bond for racism.

          Blacks and whites had hopes for healing under his administration.
          Healing did not take place. This is why I referenced Martin Luther king Jr. This man had a passion to bring unity.

          1. Betty — Thank you for your response. Though I would still like to have a better sense of how you think Obama could have done a better job bringing about unity? I am sincerely interested in your opinion.

  42. I am an “unaffiliated” voter, but definitely lean toward being conservative. However, I voted for Hillary and even convinced my much more conservative husband to vote for her as well (he despises Trump, so it didn’t take too much convincing). I was surprised at how I felt yesterday morning when I woke up to find that something miraculous had not happened during the night and that what I had most feared had. I was soooo sad. I expected to feel angry and disappointed, but I was surprised by my sadness and shock. I felt so sad to realize that the citizens of a country I love would choose to turn a blind eye to hate. I had such positive experiences waiting the the long lines to vote–people sharing snacks and offering to hold elderly people’s place so that they could sit and rest. I was shocked to realize that these same kindly people around me most likely voted for someone who instigates division and unkindness. I didn’t realize how stressed and worried about the election until I went to bed early last night feeling physically and emotionally drained. I am hoping and praying for a peaceful future.

    1. “I felt so sad to realize that the citizens of a country I love would choose to turn a blind eye to hate.”

      I that captures so much for me. It’s like I’m less sad that Trump won, and more sad that I live in a country that elected him. Does that make sense?

      1. Yes!! My kids were asking me why kids at our (very privileged) school were for Trump. I explained that their lives would probably not get any worse under Trump (they are white, straight, and wealthy) but that they simply didn’t care that the lives of so many other would be so marginalized. I can’t believe I live in a country where nearly 50% of the people care so little about people other than them. Reminds me of the quote….

        First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—
        Because I was not a Socialist.

        Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—
        Because I was not a Trade Unionist.

        Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
        Because I was not a Jew.

        Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.


    Thank you so much for your wonderful post. It gives me great comfort to know I’m not alone in my grief. I’m still so very angry. What our country has lost is devastating. I have heard agreements from the other side but for the life of me I still can’t understand. I do understand wanting change but HIM?? He was not the one to do it with, now was not the right time. I currently live in SF but am from Arkansas. I have never had so much hatred for my home state. I’m trying so had to find peace. Your post has helped me try and find ways to do that. Praying for all of us.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top