i have spent the better part of this past week trying to write this letter to you. and the conclusion i've come to is this: i have no conclusions yet.
on november 8, our country elected donald trump as the next president. he will likely be the first president either of you remember, and that makes me sad. it makes me sad because this man won on a platform of fear, hate, and lies; a platform that pitted americans against each other; a platform that reaffirmed something i hoped we were slowly slowly moving past as a country: that those who are in power will remain so, and have no responsibility to those with less/no power. he managed to stand up this platform without any real solutions or policy agendas or plans, and he won in spite of a "majority" of americans voting for someone else. i am not sure how to teach you about fairness in the aftermath of this.
here is what i know: if either of you said the things donald trump has said on his campaign, i would be horrified and ashamed. if either of you sought to exploit and oppress huge swaths of the population for your own gains, i would feel like i had failed you as a mother and a human being.
so what now? thankfully, you are young. over the next four years, you will grow a lot, but you will still be so young, and i am so relieved for that blessing. you will learn and question and become under the regime of our home, and daddy and i will do our best to engender in you both the values we think will help you become the best people you can be, even if those values are absent from our government.
here are the things i want you to know - no matter what donald trump and his cohorts say.
- you are important - every single person in this country and on this planet is important. we all deserve to live an authentic life...the best life we can create for ourselves.
- you are privileged. i didn't make the rules, but i know what they are, and in the current game, you - by virtue of nothing other than luck and circumstance - have advantages. do not let those advantages make you blind; instead, let them open your eyes to all the ways you can elevate and empower those without the innate luck you've had.
- the world is not fair - but that doesn't mean you don't have to try. yes, the system is rigged. yes, sometimes it doesn't matter if you're smarter, better, a harder worker - sometimes being the best isn't enough. but your integrity is everything - hold your heads high and work your butts off, no matter what.
- don't be afraid to speak up. be respectful. be thoughtful. but do not be cowed by those who will shout over you and try to silence you.
- love your neighbors - all your neighbors. love those who are different and those who are alike. endeavor to understand the hurt and confusion that underlies the hate and anger coming from those who shout the loudest. seek to find the similarities among all people rather than allow the differences to drive a deeper wedge between us all.
the last thing i want to say is that i'm so sorry. i'm sorry that things have gotten to this place, where people are so scared and so divided. i'm sorry that you have to see this great country in this capacity. i'm sorry for the plans this new administration is already making - to strip your futures through policies that have no eye on the long road. i'm sorry that what is happening now means you will have even more work ahead of you. all i can promise is that i will try to help. i will try to be an example of how to work hard. i will try to teach you everything i know, and i will try to help you not be afraid.
i love you both more than anything.