Tag Archives: activism

I Am Not The Enemy

Faye Snider,
circa 2013

Readers, I’m grateful for this blog, the freedom to write on this difficult subject. Since New Year’s, I’ve been pondering Trump’s New Year’s eve tweet, not quite believing that as president-elect, he wrote the following:

Happy New Year to all, including to my many enemies and those who have fought me and lost so badly they just don’t know what to do. Love!

The word “enemy” caught me. Does he believe I am one of his many enemies because I voted for Hillary? Are all Democrats, all who voted blue, his enemy?

The definition of “enemy,” according to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, is:

  • “one that is antagonistic to another; especially: one seeking to injure, overthrow, or confound an opponent.”
  • “something harmful or deadly”
  • “a military adversary, a hostile unit or force.”

At first, I brushed it off— the words of a non-thinking man, a man who uses Twitter as a megaphone, in the moment, tweeting out whatever is on his mind. When I looked closer, I noticed that Trump, in fact, used the word “and” to separate his “many enemies” from “those who fought me and lost so badly they just don’t know what to do.”

In reacting emotionally, I merged the words— enemy, fought, lost, and the final insult— “they just don’t know” ending with “LOVE.” Huh? LOVE?

Gratefully, I know to take a deep breath, slow down, pause, try to think it through. What was Trump thinking when he typed these words on New Year’s eve? In my opinion, he was not thinking. The man who will assume the executive office in just one week, lacks ‘executive function,’ the ability to regulate stimulus reactivity, to consider the effect of his words, to offer an appropriate response.

What I know is that I am NOT Trump’s enemy. I am, however, not his friend, either. I’m a citizen who voted for a woman I respected. I would like to respect Mr. Trump. But to do that, I need behavior that shows he is taking into account all those who did not vote for him. How do we get a man who is gleeful over rendering Democrats “helpless” to consider inclusion of the other and responsibility to all?

I watched the confirmation sessions with gratitude yesterday. Our country DOES have checks and balances. There are bold representatives and senators who are digging in, speaking out and doing the job of legislating best they can. Yesterday, I embraced a new heroine, a woman nearly my age, Diane Feldstein, the ranking Democrat on the Judiciary committee, who on the second day of the Jeff Sessions hearing, took a day off for pacemaker surgery.

She surprised her colleagues by returning to the hearing the very next day to pick up,  without fanfare, where she left off—holding Mr. Sessions accountable for his behavior and questioning his intentions.

I am grateful to realize that all of us who lost the election are not alone. We are a unit, a voting block of 65,844,954 men and women, who, by speaking out and opposing thoughtless measures, can bring reasonable solutions and civility to our national life.

 

 

 

 

 

Post Election: Leaf Pile

 

Leaf Pile in Driveway, Fall, 2016

Leaf Pile in Driveway,
Fall, 2016

The Sunday after Thanksgiving, I opened my shade to a vibrant, sun-lit sky. The bedroom window faces a row of tall, spindly pine trees and my neighbor’s leaf-filled yard. From my perch at the edge of my bed, I followed a lone russet leaf as it floated, feather-like-in its drift downward, to join the growing leaf pile tucked into the stone wall corner at the back of the driveway.

American Beech tree crowns hang over the back of the driveway. Their leaves drop late, often long into the winter when rattling winds cannot cleave them from their branch until the leaf is ready. Southern in origin, they hold fast to their nature.

This past week, the wet, dreary, foggy weather fit my mood. Readers are aware that I voted for Hillary and struggle with President Elect Trump who is very far from my own nature. Like the leaf, I am drifting, ever so slowly in an effort to find the right place to land. Up to November 9th, I was content in the Liberal pile and at times, leaning towards the Progressive. Now, I am clearly left of center, opposed to and resisting the choices, values and beliefs of the upcoming Trump administration. On alert, I float, open to activism in the service of a viable democracy.

I sign petitions, send money to causes I believe in, causes at risk. I plan to send a“ Not Bannon” postcard addressed to Donald Trump, c/o The Trump Organization, 725 Fifth Avenue, New York, New York, 10022 tomorrow. Opposing the Bannon influence of linguistic manipulation and white male supremacy with neo-Nazi leanings is a top priority.

As soon as I read of Jill Stein’s Crowd Source Recount Fund, I signed on. I felt a surge of hope when I received a Washington Post notice that Hillary’s campaign will participate in the Wisconsin recount with an eye on outside interference. I have never believed in conspiracy theories but in this post election environment, I believe that conspiracies are possible. We need to work for and insist upon transparency especially in the electoral results.

A friend recently wrote of her efforts to make phone calls to Senators and Representatives. Apparently, e-mails are less effective than phone calls. I need to focus and select who and when to call. If you have experience with this tactic, please leave a comment with details about the issue and who you are passionate about contacting.

Readers, I would like to hear about your efforts to make a difference in this post election environment. We need to share information and show strength of purpose and flexibility in our ability to discern what is the right course for each of us to take.

I am grateful for this blog and the opportunity to reflect, share, speak out and learn from others. I welcome your experience and comments. Please share.