The 2016 election is over, and the outcome is one that many feared and worked actively to avoid. It goes without saying that many also voted for exactly this result, which is where some of the disbelief and fear comes from. How could a campaign be successful when it trafficked so explicitly in racism, xenophobia, and misogyny? When it took aim at civil liberties and outright civility? When it so clearly divided us, American from American?
For many of us, these aspects of the campaign were traumatizing, highlighting the ways that we have been and are marginalized in American society. Many of us are hurt, anxious, angry, and aghast. I have heard so many people this morning who, like me, consoled and explained this outcome to their children—grade school children who don’t understand how this could happen, because they have witnessed bullying and name-calling that would not be tolerated in their classroom. Children who are worried about what this means for their family and friends who are different in some way.
The truth is, whatever the outcome of the election, the campaign process has shown us how much more work there is to do to end racism, sexism, heterosexism, ableism, and all forms of systemic targeting of our fellow human beings. It has highlighted how much bigger the divides we are trying to bridge, and the importance of our work to open minds and build relationships to foster inclusion and equity. And it stands as an important reminder of how important it is to enshrine progress and protections for marginalized groups in structural policy change.
Our work is cut out for us. NCCJ continues to pursue our vision of a better community for all of us, not just some us. If you are feeling like you don’t know what to do, you can join us and support our work today:
- Register for our Building Inclusive Communities Workshop next Monday, 11/14/16.
- Sign up to volunteer with NCCJ St. Louis as we move this work forward.
- Support our work by making an online donation today.
Together, we can and will advance inclusion, equity, and justice in our region.