I Hear America Weeping

11 Nov

libertyweepsI hear America weeping today, November 9, 2016. No, this is not Walt Whitman’s poem, I Hear America Singing. This is a song of woe, a song of anguish, a song of despair.

How is it possible that a person who sold nothing but pure hate could be elected President of the United States? A man’s whose venom reached Muslims, Latinos, the entire LGBTQ community, and all women is now President Elect? How? When Gollum’s understudy, James Comey, released his red herring of Hillary’s emails (which of course was NOTHING) days before the election, it managed to turn the conversation away from the dozen of women who have been sexually assaulted by Donald Trump. A man who admitted to cheating the government out of paying taxes — taxes that people in poverty and middle class people have to pay. For his loyalty, Comey will not lose his job.

I understand people wanting to break a system. What I do not understand is how you chose to anoint such a homophobic, racist, misogynistic, and xenophobic piece of hell to do this. How? This man is a clear threat to me and my family and to all women, to all people of color.

Today, I hear children afraid to go to school. I hear adults and children of color afraid to live in the United States. I am afraid and ashamed to live here now.

I hear LGBT people young and old afraid to leave their homes — afraid that all of the successes made in the past eight years will now be turned back.

I hear women crying and fearful that the government will have even more control over their bodies — that the culture of rape has now been sanctioned by a misogynistic predator who has been elected as the leader of this nation.

I hear Native voices peacefully asking for us not to trespass on their sacred land and cry a cry centuries old in protest of colonization.

I hear the voices of our Muslim family quiver at the thought of what this now world “leader” will do to them.

I hear the Black Lives Movement tapping into strength and resiliency in the face of sanctioned, sustained racism.

I hear the choir of over 20 million voices (mine included) that now have health insurance thanks to Obamacare (The Affordable Care Act) scared that we will now go uninsured because of Trump.

I hear parents asking, “how do I explain this to my children?” How do we explain how we have rewarded this bully and his white supremacy?

How do we heal a nation that is divided by hate versus love. Trump has managed to normalize wicked and categorically unacceptable behavior. His supporters have sent a clear message that the only people safe and wanted in this country are white, heterosexual, cisgender men — and you better not have a disability! And you are welcome to treat women as chattel.

For those of you who voted for Trump who are in poverty, poor, and or unemployed, you have screwed yourself over yet again! But worse, you threw all of your neighbors under the bus because of your white anger.

As I am very quickly approaching 50 years old, I am exceedingly sad. This is not the country I hoped we would be in 2016.

Yet, I will not give into despair. Rather, I will challenge myself and all of America to take action! We need to organize, support each other, and change this system. Let us make every effort to mitigate the destruction he has laid out, the shredding of rights he has promised. Stay mobilized and passionate! There are anti-Trump rallies taking place all over the country — people are organizing and taking action. In fact, I was caught up in traffic last night because our anti-Trump rally managed to shut down I5.  I must confess, I did a little happy dance in the car. While I was inconvenienced, I was elated to learn that people are protesting. My only sadness, was that I did not get to attend this rally.

Well, my other sadness was that I later learned there were one or two people in the rally that were ill behaved. Please, I do hope all of us who are a part of these rallies do so peacefully–I don’t want us behaving in the same way Trump does. I implore all of you, please don’t despair, take action! Yes, I am also speaking to you, my white heterosexual allies. WE NEED YOU! Now is an opportunity for white heterosexual allies to step up to the plate and make your voices heard!

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41 Responses to “I Hear America Weeping”

  1. nonsmokingladybug November 11, 2016 at 6:08 am #

    Very well said!

    I fear I will lose health insurance when they overrule Obamacare. I fear for my friends, who are a gay couple. I fear for my Muslim friend who might not be able to see her family anymore, if they are not allowed to fly into the USA. I fear for our retrirement, when they privatice Social Security. And more than anything do I fear a war that will not stop on our borders.

    • Michael Hulshof-Schmidt November 11, 2016 at 6:15 am #

      Thank you for your comment here. Yes, I know there are so many of us living in fear right now for identities held. Let us hope we can organize and take action and support one another. Peace, Michael.

  2. Central Oregon Coast NOW November 11, 2016 at 6:25 am #

    Reblogged this on Central Oregon Coast NOW.

  3. Dr. Rex November 11, 2016 at 6:44 am #

    Reblogged this on It Is What It Is and commented:
    I hear America weeping and I weep with her. I’m still having a very hard time!

    • Michael Hulshof-Schmidt November 11, 2016 at 6:45 am #

      Dr. Rex, thank you for reblogging this! I hope you are well and coping with this awful mess. Lots of love, Michael.

      • Dr. Rex November 11, 2016 at 6:51 am #

        Hi Michael! ❤️… I’m still numb! I’m beginning to be very afraid. I was I had the passion to fight. Right not it’s not there … i feel defeated. Thx for you kind words! ❤️

      • Michael Hulshof-Schmidt November 11, 2016 at 6:54 am #

        How could you feel anything other? Sending you lots and lots of love my friend!

      • Dr. Rex November 11, 2016 at 6:56 am #

        Thank you! ❤️

  4. bevanyardleigh November 11, 2016 at 8:12 am #

    Weeping, sighing, staggering through our days as if sucker punched. Lest anyone think the negative power of Trumpism is overstated, I offer this Twitter aggregate. https://twitter.com/i/moments/796417517157830656

    WARNING: it is filled with violence and hate. If you are already weary and worn, leave it alone. If you think we’re in for a “normal” transition of power, read it and then defend your indefensible position.

    • Michael Hulshof-Schmidt November 11, 2016 at 8:21 am #

      Bevan, thank you for being such a strong ally! Thank you for standing up! Peace, Michael.

  5. Goldie November 11, 2016 at 9:46 am #

    Michael, as always you cut right to the chase. I am saddened and terrified by the amount of hate this man has encouraged. This is not the America that I’ve believed in and certainlly not the America that my father spent 20 years of his life serving.

    As the violence toward us and other minorities has begun, I fear what lies ahead for any and all of us.

    Thank you so much for this disturbing but needed post.

    • Michael Hulshof-Schmidt November 11, 2016 at 11:01 am #

      Goldie, thank you for your comments here. I hope we can organize to help mitigate the awful destruction of this man and his supporters. Peace, Michael.

  6. BRENT BLACKMON November 11, 2016 at 10:02 am #

    “How is it possible…?” indeed, Michael. Something has gone badly wrong. And I am afraid, too.
    I fear that the fact that he could get elected is on OUR OWN heads. I fear that we have hated those that we accuse of hate and we are suffering a backlash from our hate. Not a whitelash as we have heard it termed, because this is not about race. Not a macholash either, because this isn’t about gender. Nor a breederlash. I am not the expert, but the numbers I have seen show that Trump did only marginally better than Romney did. We didn’t lose because of a rallying of white, chauvinistic, homophobic bigots. We lost because WE DIDN’T VOTE like we did in 2012. I fear that we lost our momentum because we lost our passion – we let this election become about the candidate, and not about the issues.
    I am afraid that we, like you, are asking the question, “How?”, but not really looking for the answer. We sound not like we are trying to solve the problem (prevent a recurrence in the next election), but like we are simply complaining. Complaining is not going to win votes in 2020. I fear that the truth is we lost our passion because we no longer believe ourselves when we shout hate at those we accuse of hate. We tell ourselves that we are compassionate and inclusive, and yet we ridicule and reject those that disagree with us. Just because someone disagrees with me, doesn’t make him or her a racist. If that person won’t LISTEN to me because of the color of my skin, then he or she is likely a racist. But we have been calling him a racist just because he has an opinion. The answer to our problem, the way to prevent a recurrence of the unfathomable result of this election, is to stop the hate within ourselves. Is to listen to the opinions of those that disagree with us. Is to find a way to resolve the differences in opinion and not just be happy to shout the other person down. When you have the divisiveness that we have today in this country, we have to accept the responsibility for at least half of the problem. We, as a country, are never going to be happy if we don’t learn to quit shouting, and start listening; quit fighting and start cooperating. And THAT’s the key to 2020 – not “Vote Democratic because we hate the Republican candidate,” but “vote Democratic because we are ALL going to be better off.”

    • Michael Hulshof-Schmidt November 11, 2016 at 11:03 am #

      Brent, thank you for your comments. I disagree with part of your assertion here. He has demonstrated that in fact he is racist and homophobic and a misogynist. What else does he need to do to prove this to you? Peace, Michael.

  7. Uncle Ñoño “Gwamps” Kingston November 11, 2016 at 11:43 am #

    This article is a very nicely articulated perspective on the election consequences. We have to acquire perspective on the situation on hand so that we can win the war that is brewing, and this civil war to my dismay will have to become bloody if we truly want to win America back. I pray desperately, as a peace loving American Muslim, that I am wrong, but if I am wrong, what will be lost?

    I am opposed to destroying businesses that provide honest livings for hard working families and individuals, but for the first time in my life, even to my horror, I support assassinations of the new Hitler and Hitler’s Fourth Reich. Every description given by American Evangelical Christians of Anti-Christ fits Donald Trump, but unlike President Reagan, both Presidents Bush, President Clinton, and President Obama whom conspiracy theorists erroneously proclaimed were Anti-Christ, The Trumpet has sounded the horrors of his misogyny, xenophobia, racism, and everything that Evangelical Christian white supremacists like the Ku Klux Klan and other Christian Identity groups such as what Timothy McVeigh stood for and belonged to describe as Anti-Christ. Then again, what Christian in America truly believes in the Christ of the canonical Gospels, right? I haven’t met one yet.

    To understand this new civil unrest and potential bloody civil war, we have to first realize that the war is against the electorate, not just The Trumpet. We have to realize that the electorate is venal and follows the money of horrible people like The Trumpet and his cronies. Our target should first protect businesses and organizations that support our communities, and then we should seek to invade, destroy, and annihilate every single white supremacist community, family, organization, and individual in America so that we can truly have a democracy with “…liberty and justice for all.” In this case, I am supporting The Trumpet’s version of The Second Amendment, and the NRA apparently supports the Black Panthers, Mexican Mafia, other gangs, mobs, and mafias in acquiring the assault paraphernalia necessary to militarize themselves and engage. Now that the Trumpet is the President Elect, I am finding that in this area, I am very much in line with The Trumpet and the NRA to my horror and regret. God bless those martyrs in this cause.

    By allowing white supremacists and evangelical Christians to live in America, we support their divisiveness, bigotry, and hate-filled terrorism against their own non-white, non-evangelical Christian fellow citizens. Our war now is first against the electorate, then Trump, Pence, and all their cronies (unfortunately mostly Republicans which disgraces the good Republicans), and lastly against every white supremacist community, organization, family, and individual in America that threatens the very fiber of what America desires to represent, be, and maintain.

    I believe that love reigns supreme, but sometimes a war against principles and principalities means shedding blood as well, God forbid. This is not what I hope for, nor is it what I want; it’s just the current reality of America today.

    If the President elect does not have to pay taxes, neither should any other American citizen. If the President elect does not have to obey, honor, and sustain the laws of the land, neither should any other American citizen. I can go on and on and on, but we cannot escape the horrors of repeated history without acting upon the fears spread by Donald Trump himself and via the means he publicly supported himself, and that means he and Mike Pence need to be assassinated – no ifs, ands, or butts about it.

    In other words, if we don’t stop them in their tracks, we will not be able to maintain and support unity in our diversity, and our children who are handicapped, not white, or non-conforming Evangelical Christians, or non-Christians, are at risk of being terrorized like the natives of America, black Americans, the Japanese Americans during World War II, and Muslims of today. To bring an end to the horrors that are facing us with the threat of a Trump Administration, we must do to all white supremacists what they have been doing to blacks and other non-Aryans like myself since slavery began in America: hang them in their own neighborhoods, on their front porches, in their own front yards, and wherever we can find them. Last of all, anyone guilty of committing such acts in the defense of their country, in the name of freedom of religion, and everything that America has fought for throughout its existence, should be inured of any criminal charges whatsoever based on the genuine understanding of why The Second Amendment exists.

    America, we genuinely are at war against ourselves, and a nation divided against herself cannot stand. Be prepared for the horrors of another holocaust in America. History proves that we have not learned from history, so let us get this lesson down pat this time so that we can save innocent lives and can live in peace, with liberty and justice for all, not just the white supremacist plutocrat who rules America today.

    • Michael Hulshof-Schmidt November 11, 2016 at 11:57 am #

      Thank you for your comments here. Yes, it seems painfully clear that we have not learned from history. I can only hope we can mitigate the destruction of Trump and his all who support him. Peace, Michael.

  8. Gronda Morin November 11, 2016 at 11:46 am #

    Dear Michael,

    i went quickly from the grieving stage of sadness to anger. I am furious at the media for their tendency towards false equivalency reporting between 2 candidates when there was no comparison;

    I am furious with the DNC, the democratic party establishment which played favoritism and hindered us from knowing for sure who would have prevailed barring any interference;

    I have been so shocked about the unprecedented interference in the election process by the FBI with only 11 days left;

    Then there are the Russians and WikiLeaks’ Julian Assange meddling in our U.S. election process where one party and the media didn’t seem to give a damn;

    Then there are the despicable and disrespectful tactics of bringing Bill Clinton’s floozies to the debate floor to humiliate Hillary Clinton, etc. etc. etc.

    Then there is the media who misled us with wrong info. Their reporting turned out to be totally incompetent in discerning reality; the major news media outlets rendered a poor performance equal to FOX TV News in 2012;

    Then we have been lied to about how foolish Donald Trump was in voicing his concerns about votes being rigged. I refer everyone to the Emmy nominated HBO documentary, “Hacking Democracy.” It turns out his concern is legitimate.

    Oh, yes, after we have listened to several months of Donald Trump’s hate speech and his purporting that his followers would be protesting in huge numbers if he lost the election, last evening he let slip that those protesting against him now, are being unfair.

    I am one angry, upset “Nasty Woman.’ Ciao, Gronda

    • Michael Hulshof-Schmidt November 11, 2016 at 11:59 am #

      Gronda, yes, you have every right to be upset! I’m so glad you are one Nasty Woman! 🙂 Peace, Michael

  9. Lynn Blak November 11, 2016 at 12:54 pm #

    Someone said, Bill Clinton?, “it’s all about the money, stupid”. Except for America’s underbelly of haters, this is the reason why people voted for Trump. It had several disgiuses, the ACA, a perceived welfare state, taxes, disinfranchised and whatever. It’s still about money.
    BTW, I did not vote for that deplorable man.

    • Michael Hulshof-Schmidt November 11, 2016 at 12:58 pm #

      Lynn, I do think part of this was about money. Sadly, I think a lot of this was about fear and hate coming from white folk. Thank you for commenting here. Peace, Michael.

      • Lynn Blake November 11, 2016 at 4:55 pm #

        Agreed there is a great deal of fear coming from a wide swath of white people. I suspect that the actual haters have remained about the same percentage of society. I should point out that I agree with everything you said and much about what Brent said.
        I think I sounded a bit naive and I’m everything but. My back story is simple. I married my husband 48 yrs ago in Fairfax County Viginia after being denied a marriage license in NC. We have a family and friends that include every minority of any type you could name. I have been hesitantly optimistic that my grandchildren would grow up in a color blind society and I would do practically anything to help that happen. This election has put a dent in my confidence. I’m certainly not going to stop fighting for that goal.
        BTW, I love your blog, it’s given me respite from the things a bunch my helpful “friends” send me.

      • Michael Hulshof-Schmidt November 11, 2016 at 8:17 pm #

        Lynn, I feel quite honored and humbled that you shared a part of your narrative here! All I cay say is a huge Thank You! Yours in solidarity, Michael.

  10. Xena November 11, 2016 at 2:03 pm #

    Michael,
    I thought I feared the worst, and then this morning heard about Trump’s transition team and possible cabinet members. He has appointed his sons and his son-in-law to have authority. That sounds like Trump is going to build his administration on a system of royalty.

    • Michael Hulshof-Schmidt November 11, 2016 at 2:39 pm #

      Yes, and sadly the entire team is dedicated to moving back the entire civil rights movement. I hope you are well and safe. Peace, Michael.

  11. Deb Durler November 11, 2016 at 5:31 pm #

    Thank you for this excellent post. I weep, too. And scream in anger and despair. And he is not my President. I am in my early 60s, and I will lose my health insurance, but am grateful to President Obama that I had it for two years. I am white and straight, so I don’t have to fear for my life like so many marginalized communities do. I stand with them and weep with them. This is not the country I thought it was.

    • Michael Hulshof-Schmidt November 11, 2016 at 8:23 pm #

      Deb, thank you for your comments here. Thank you for standing in solidarity–thank you for being such a strong ally! I’m sorry that you and many of us will lose our health insurance and face indignities beyond belief. Peace, Michael.

  12. Bruce Kestelman November 12, 2016 at 7:19 am #

    Thank you Michael for sharing your heart felt comments that share reason along with the emotion that comes through. Thanks for providing this forum for folks to share their feelings and thoughts here as well.

    Peace!

    Bruce

    • Michael Hulshof-Schmidt November 12, 2016 at 8:45 am #

      Bruce, thank you for commenting here. Thank you also for being such a strong champion of mine! Thank you also for being such a strong LGBTQ ally! You are one that certainly uses your white, heterosexual privilege for equity! Peace, Michael.

  13. Elisabeth Fincher November 13, 2016 at 12:48 pm #

    Hi Michael,

    I am so glad to see you writing.

    I hear ideas on how allies can help, including the safety pin movement. I am not hearing from those being targeted how they would like to be helped; perhaps no one is asking or perhaps they don’t have the trust necessary to ask for help.

    I greatly admire the resiliency of those who are targets. We have much to learn about our own resiliency as a nation. Perhaps if we listen to and act on ideas presented by those who are targeted we will discover a new level of resiliency in ourselves and our country.
    Elisabeth

  14. Skipper November 14, 2016 at 8:48 am #

    I realize that so many of us are weeping as well as shuddering but we have to find some things to DO, like making sure we befriend those who may be out of our comfort zone, i.e those of another faith or another color or another sexual orientation. It behooves us who are concerned to exhibit our strengths of thoughtfulness and compassion. We need to continue to speak out against all wrongs that we see…not just privately, but publicly too. It is a difficult assignment. And…for those who can, we need to have you run for public office….we must not join them, but instead win positions of authority where good rules and laws can be held in place and those that promote violence or discrimination be stopped. Thank you for the chance to reflect…The majority of the US population did NOT want Trump as President. One of the first steps that must be taken is to abolish the Electoral College System…that is past due.

    • Michael Hulshof-Schmidt November 14, 2016 at 8:56 am #

      Skipper, thank you for commenting here. Great advice. Yes, we certainly need to take action and abolish the electoral college! Peace, Michael.

  15. Rich McIntyre November 17, 2016 at 8:38 am #

    Hello Michael – I hope you are doing well. I think you may find this article interesting. https://hbr.org/2016/11/what-so-many-people-dont-get-about-the-u-s-working-class

    Sharon and I sure miss living so close to your Mother. Email and occasional telephone calls are sad substitutes for actually visiting with her.

    Regards,
    Rich McIntyre

    • Michael Hulshof-Schmidt November 17, 2016 at 9:07 am #

      Hi Rich, thank you for commenting here and for providing the link. Yes, I had read this article. If fear I find it over simplifies the problem we now are facing as a nation. I also took particular offense to: “Hillary Clinton, by contrast, epitomizes the dorky arrogance and smugness of the professional elite.” As this is a perfect example of systemic misogyny and shows great disdain for education. There is a great word that has now been recognized as the word of the year by the OED: “Post truth”–adjective relating to circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than emotional appeals. I feel this certainly captures where are nation is currently. I thin the article also neglects to acknowledge the intense racism and homophobia we are currently engaged in here. I desperately want to believe that none of you are racist, homophobic, xenophobic misogynists. How you feel in your hearts, however, is irrelevant.
      You support – and may have voted for – a candidate who based his entire campaign on these negative traits that you say you do not embody. He won the electoral college. I assume you see something in his candidacy that inspires you.
      So do me a favor and hold him to the values you say you cherish. Help him govern in a way that is consistent with what you say is important to you.
      Because if you smugly assure me that you aren’t a racist, homophobic, xenophobic misogynist while you sit back and let the President trample the rights of millions of Americans, you need to do a bit of soul-searching.
      If you sit back and let people lose health care, families be torn apart, women lose basic rights, people be banned for what they believe, your platitudes are worthless. I also have to emphasize that me and my family are directly being hurt by Trump. As always, I appreciate your willingness to engage and dialogue. Peace, Michael.

    • penguinlad November 17, 2016 at 11:08 am #

      Thank you for sharing this fascinating article. It provides some valuable — and terrifying — insights. What worries me is that it feels like another stream in the flood of normalization.

      Fine, so Trump tapped into some very real blue-collar rage. Why does exploring that necessitate being an apologist for his tactics? The author tacitly — and in some cases not so tacitly — says that Turmp’s misogyny, racism, homophobia, xenophobia, and anti-intellectualism (frankly parading as proud ignorace) were fine because they won him votes.

      That is NOT acceptable and is remarkably lazy thinking. When Obama won legitimately with sound policy proposals and an appeal to optimism, the roar from the right was that an out-of-touch elitist sold the country a bill of goods. When Trump lies and blusters his way to a win that promises to rapidly shred the bill of rights, suddenly we’re supposed to ignore his tactics because they were effective? That’s a nasty double standard, a creepy normalization of horrific behavior, and a not so subtle dash of racism.

      Eight years of aggressive Republican obstruction, culminating in an astonishing dereliction of duty on a Supreme Court nominee, led to a government that did little to solve America’s problems. How grimly ironic that a demagogue fascist in Republican clothing managed to sell himself as the solution.

  16. katy b. December 12, 2016 at 12:25 pm #

    It’s been so hard to fathom what our country is going to become that I haven’t even known how to respond to your post. You’ve verbalized what many of us are feeling, and I hope we can heed your words to act rationally but still not accept this despicable human being as our leader. Hatred is still so rampant in our society. This election has set us back at least 50 years. 😦

    • Michael Hulshof-Schmidt December 12, 2016 at 2:10 pm #

      Katy, yes. I think everyday he makes a new appointment, my heart sinks. We must create resistance and support one another and look for ways to actively support all targeted communities. Yours in solidarity, Michael.

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  1. I Hear America Weeping | Social Justice For All | John Oliver Mason - November 11, 2016

    […] Source: I Hear America Weeping | Social Justice For All […]

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