Two Americas

I believed that I was America. I was high-school educated, working towards a college degree. I was white. I was Christian. My parents were Republicans. We lived in a nice house in a suburb of a medium sized city. I went to a high school that worshiped football. I live in Illinois. Today, I am horrified by these middle-class, white, Christian, midwesterners… specifically, the ones who are voting for Trump.
It turns out, growing up in a Catholic Private School where our most ethnic family was full-blooded Italian, that this is just ONE demographic. We have cities; real ones. We have areas of this country that are close to other countries. We have areas where you can be other religions with a community right in your town to practice your beliefs. We have places with manufacturing economies, mining economies, service economies. Hell, there’s a place called Florida.
So why is it that my folks feel that this is their country, and everyone else is wrong? Aren’t we a nation founded on religious freedoms, on being a melting pot, on IMMIGRANTS?
It could be their religious beliefs. Changing your beliefs doesn’t mean you’re a good person; it means you’ve been corrupted. There isn’t a lot of room to grow in some of the churches in this country. But that is an unfair generalization to some of the very holy communities speaking out against religious discrimination- the kind where religions are discriminating against others. Conservatives looking for votes want to pass ‘religious freedom’ bills. But these bills aren’t protecting people from being able to practice whatever faith they want. These bills are trying to stir up evangelicals who think that they’re being persecuted. You’re not. We teach evolution in schools because fossils exist. We teach Islam — not how to be Islam, just what they believe- because we know that it’s easy to be scared of things you don’t understand. We know that kids who grow up hearing different perspectives and learning many things will know more than kids who grow up hearing one perspective and learning one thing. That’s how learning things works. Nobody is trying to make your kids become Muslim in public school, I promise. They just want them to answer on a test question what principles Muslims stand for. And guess what? They teach other religions too. You wanna know why they don’t focus on Christianity so much? Because at half of these schools your fourth grade science teacher is ALSO your Sunday School teacher, and they know you already know it. We have a lot of Christians in this country.
But we have a lot of other religions too. And we’ve had them there for a very long time. Because religions aren’t a race. You can’t look at someone and think “Muslim”. I don’t go around seeing white people and saying “Oh shit, these Mormons are going to wait till I die and then baptise me into their church.” (No offense to Mormons; you just were the first ones I thought of and it was easier than setting up a teetotaling Baptist joke. Also, you don’t like those jokes? That’s what it feels like to Muslim right now, except then I’d shoot you because I’m a bigot.) We’re not discriminating against Christians. We just want people like Mike Pence to stop putting Christianity into our Constitutional Rights. Pro-Choice doesn’t mean you go around encouraging people to kill any babies they may one day conceive; it just means you believe a woman who has been there from the moment of conception understands what’s best for her better than a bunch of white guys who spend most of their year avoiding the consequences of their actions by having separate healthcare plans. America is not a Christian nation. It is a non-religiously affiliated one. You’re not being discriminated against; we’re just treating all religions equally. Maybe that’s why so many of you don’t like feminism.

Because that’s what feminism is all about. Equality. And the fact that Donald Trump used a pivot to ISIS instead of talking about sexual assault kind of proves our point. You’re scared ISIS might come in and rape you. We’re scared one of you might. Because rapists look like Brock Turner, they look like Trump. We thought they looked like the Central Park Five, but we were wrong. They have been scientifically proven to be innocent. Unless you’re Trump. My uterus; that sacred spot that Republicans say is all I’m good for, is not a handle for you to take me as a carry-on item on your failed airline. I am more than a child-bearing machine for your sexual pleasure. I am a person, and I am voting Clinton because our President represents all of us. How can someone represent me when he doesn’t see me as more than a line in a pre-nup. I am an annoyance. I am an inconvenience. I am meant to be soft and delicate and fragile until his tiny hands use me, abuse me, and then trade me in for a newer model. And then it is my fault for not being strong enough, for not being able to match you. You will trade me in as if you had done nothing wrong, and then call out your opponent’s husband for doing the same thing. Why is it okay for you to do it but not him? Why are Bill’s affairs a weapon you can use against her but yours are just how men are? Bill Clinton is a man too. And the men I know; many who have been in locker rooms, they don’t speak like you do. You were sixty years old and you gave me less respect than a teenage boy, the kind I was taught to hide my shoulders from. Is that why your face is so red and your words so incoherent? You can see Hillary’s ankles, and you’ve become undone? Bill is not a weapon for you to use unless you admit that you too have been problematic. Our morals should not be based on the R or D behind our names.

You begun this campaign by announcing Mexicans are rapists. Your wall was your rhetoric and your builders were those who have been silenced as we have learned better and tried to be better. How can you call Hillary divisive when your only solid plan is a wall. It is a literal division. It is a literal division impossible to achieve. But that doesn’t particularly bother you. You will use the votes you can get to get into office, and then you will not care what they wanted from you. You have always been looking out for those gold letters, and nothing more. You will do anything in office to benefit you, because that is what you have done this campaign. You don’t care who you hurt or how low you have to stoop to reach them with your tiny unfit hands, because it is all about winning. You admitted as much in the first debate. You have a winning temperament. When you’re winning, your temperament is fine. When you’re losing, you are red ties and orange bronzer and rage. Your line of attack is personal and petty. The only reason you can claim winning is that Clinton’s campaign refuses to sink to your level. Calling you racist and sexist and Islamaphobic and xenophobic isn’t name-calling you. It’s putting a label on you. The same way you might put a number on a girl you don’t like. I would give you a one, because to call you a zero would be giving you an extraordinaryness you do not deserve. You are the crass bully who does anything to get ahead, and you have gotten as far as you have because there are those in this country who wish they could get away with what you have done.

When those in Florida are begging for aid after Hurricane Matthew, and there is not enough, I will remember who did not pay their taxes.

When a private citizen is harassed on twitter for their weight-gain by a presidential candidate, I will remember who did not apologize but doubled down on their misogyny and double standards. When you are praised for ‘telling it like it is’, I will remember who apologized for using the word deplorable with its correct definition.

When your answer to race problems focuses only on the inner city- ignoring the fact that we do not confine certain races to certain areas, or that skin color is not an indication of class, education level, or winning temperament- I will remember who advocated for unconstitutional practices against citizens of his own country.

When you tell the parents of a fallen soldier their son would have been alive if you were President, I remember who advocated for war crimes against families and used “just words” to threaten another candidate. I remember who disparaged a war hero for getting captured in a war that you were too cowardly and too entitled to be drafted in. How can you have the stamina to serve as President when you didn’t have the foot support to serve in Vietnam? How can you protest Benghazi when you joke about avoiding STDs at home because you didn’t want to do anything for your country? If I was President, you would have been stationed on the front lines for avoiding. Oh well, maybe the second amendment people can do something about that. I don’t know. Did I use my ‘just words’ correctly, Donald? Is that how we talk in your America?

Because if so, I say no. That’s not what I want my America to be. That’s not what she has become. We are vibrant and full of life, with more voices and perspectives than we ever had before. That is the American Dream. To be anyone, from anywhere, and have the same opportunities and treatment. No matter our gender, our religion, our skin. This does not sound like the plan you have not actually planned, mixed up in your word salad. Maybe we are so horrified by the tapes because we never hear you stay on a target, and that is what you’ve chosen to target on. America is for everyone, not just you. So take your “small loan” and your hidden tax returns. Take your Russian ties and your business failures and your gold-plated con artist bullshit and leave.

And for the love of God, stop tweeting.

Don’t take your wife; she deserves better. Don’t take your children; they can be better than you ever were. I’d say don’t take your money but I’m not sure you have any of your own. You doubled the rent on your property so the G.O.P. would pay you more but now they refuse to campaign for you. Maybe then Trump Foundation will be permitted to fundraiser again, now that the recipient of all that charity is in fact destitute. Only one person needs to leave the country this election cycle, and it is you. 
OR, if you really care, then help us fix what you broke to get ahead. For once in your damn life, put someone else first and help us rebuild. Apologize. Admit to your con. Stop enabling Billy Bush.

Hillary Clinton did not represent me last night because I would have stood in front of you and told you to fuck off. To fuck right out of this country with your message that only some of us are really American, that only some of us belong here. You are not my President. You will never be my President. In fact, Donald, let me just say it. From one regular, ordinary citizen who will never be President to another: Fuck off.