I am so proud right now. To quote Michelle Obama, I’ve never been so proud of my country. I feel like I had a unique perspective in this election. I’m a white Hillary-liberal from an all-white republican community, but also I’m a soon-to-be-wife of a black man and future mother of black children. This was my chance to make a difference, so that I can tell the truth when I tell my future children of color the same thing my white parents told me: you really can be anything you want to be.
In a larger sense, I think what this election represented for me and for so many other white liberal voters from small town Midwest, was an opportunity to have our voices heard on an issue communities like mine never allowed us to talk about. I grew up learning about race through text books. Racial prejudice was taught as a thing of history. Like many others, I developed a subconscious guilt to know I could have ancestors who participated in the mass oppression of a people. And, to grow up having heard countless racial slurs presented as if they were a matter of fact and not what they really were, a product of fear or hate. It is a special thing to see the Midwest turn blue and realize all those voices that have been there just waiting to be heard will be silent no more.
So, beyond party loyalty, beyond my love for my future husband and new family, this was a very special opportunity to say loud and clear, YES WE CAN. All of us. Together.
P.S. I do want to note that while this election was a time of forward movement, California and Arizona both did support the ban on gay marriage, Proposition 8. This is not just a set back for the gay and lesbian community, but for civil liberties. No matter your religious stance on the subject, this is a matter of civil rights. And, it is wrong. The same arguments once used to “protect white women” by banning interracial marriage is the same arguments used now. Until we are all equal, we are not equal at all.
“An injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” – Martin Luther King Jr.
Onward and upward,