A quick author’s note: I want to start off by saying I purposely did not include “democrat” or “liberal” in the title because I’d like to gain some insight from anyone who believes in forward thinking, regardless of party affiliations. Our country is so divided because of the election right now so I want to make sure I am as inclusive as possible going forward.
The reason I write to accomplished forward thinkers, specifically, is simply because they’ve been there. They’ve lived through abhorrent situations and championed for change. I can’t speak for everyone, but a lot of millennials- myself included- are lost. We feel like chickens with their heads cut off, running around and trying to figure out how to move forward in a time like this. Our president-elect has promised on several occasions to limit the rights of various groups- immigrants, women, the LGBTQ+ community (to name a few). Millions of Americans are in fear of being ostracized by the work our president-elect has promised to do. Yet, the decision has been made and Donald Trump will most certainly become our president in January.
What I’m really trying to figure out is, how do we handle this loss, this setback, with grace? We’re all so consumed with our anger and fear, myself included. We want to be sure we’re doing the right thing and standing up for what we believe in- in the best way.
So, dear veteran forward thinkers: how can we express our views without being labeled as “whiny”? How do we justify our fears without being condemned by those who happily support our president-elect? Do we protest the outcome and be labeled anti-American? Do we “sit it out” and get involved only if our president-elect screws up? How will we forgive ourselves if we do wait and it becomes too late for change? How do we reason with friends and family members who support and believe in the exact opposite things we do? What steps can we take to begin working together?
Experienced forward thinkers, how can we channel our energy- and encourage others to do so as well- into something better than violence? Do we look to volunteering at places like Planned Parenthood, for example, to support women’s rights? How do we denounce hate- without perpetuating hatred for a man who promises to take so many things away from so many people? How do we assure our fearing friends that everything will be okay, even if we have no fathomable clue if it actually will be? Likewise, how can we set a good example for the children, when we don’t even know how to handle this situation?
I have faith in my fellow forward thinkers because I know we’re driven by a force that’s more powerful and paramount than any of us: love. Though we may be lost now, we will certainly find our way and rise above any and all hatred; we just might need some words of encouragement to get us started. Moreover: dear wise, accomplished, and seasoned forward thinkers- how do we heal?
A millennial trying to make a difference.