It’s two o’clock in the morning.
I should not be awake now. My body aches to be sleeping. But I’ve just watched the acceptance speech of Donald Trump and I am so distraught that I cannot sleep.
Mostly because I’m sobbing.
I watched the whole election process with little emotion. I was outraged at some of the comments of course, but I figured, “Hell, it’s business as usual.”
It wasn’t until he won that I burst into tears.
I’d like to say it was some deep political concern for our country that caused me to become all snot-nosed and weepy, but no.
I am concerned about a TV reality show personality (the lowest form of art, only necessitated by the strike of the real writers) running our country. But that’s not reason enough for tears. I know there’s little a president can do alone.
I’m sobbing because America just declared me dispensable.
I’m lucky. I never had to march with Susan B. Anthony for my right to vote. I never had to sit on the back of a bus, or endure spitting or beating as I made my way to a polling location. Other than a raised eyebrow and look-over as I presented my driver’s license (with the Mexican last name, “Dominguez”, I am the whitest Mexican you’ll ever see) I’ve never encountered any resistance at all at the polls.
I thought I was immune. I thought my white skin and my suburban house and my college degree made me somehow untouchable. I thought we all knew that I was worthy.
But now we’ve elected a president, a President of the United States, who proves that I was sorely mistaken. Because evidently, women are little more than playthings.
This election says it is ok to publically rate human beings on a scale of fuckablity, to grab them by their most private parts (or at least to claim to), to kiss them regardless of whether they want to be kissed or not, and to brag about it.
That is if they have a vagina and you have a penis and enough money.
I thought we’d covered this. I thought the 19th amendment started it and the 1960s ended it. I thought we had all agreed that my ability to birth babies did not diminish my ability to think critically, did not diminish my rights as a human being to vote, to own property, to determine the course of my own sexuality or earning potential. I thought my mother had handled this for me, dammit.
But tonight, I see that is not the case.
Tonight I see that millions of my fellow countrymen will happily vote for a leader that considers me, and millions of proud “pussy” possessors, as nothing more than a commodity – corn or wheat or petroleum – available for trade for the largest diamond or French Estate.
What was that poem?
First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Socialist.
Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.
Oh, yes. That was me.
He talked about the Mexicans. I thought, “Oh, that’s terrible!”
I am not a Mexican.
He talked about the Muslims. I thought, “How despicable!”
I am not a Muslim.
He made fun of the disabled. I thought, “That’s outrageous!”
I am not disabled.
He ridiculed women. I thought, “That’s the end of him!”
I was not correct.
Somehow I thought that I was the unbreachable barrier. That talking about women – objectifying them, assaulting them – was a line we could all agree on. I thought he was over. I thought we were safe.
Now it’s past three o’clock and I’m still shocked, though I am no longer crying.
I’ve never felt the patriarchy more potently, all of my Women’s Studies classes be damned.
Tonight I feel that the majority of people in this country think that I am “less than”. That my daughters are “less than”. I fear my son and my husband, however unwittingly, will begin to believe that we are “less than”. It’s this feeling of utter betrayal that leaves me wrecked and hopeless.
I want to believe that it will all be ok. I want to believe that presidents come and presidents go and the world keeps spinning regardless. I want to say that we’ve seen this before, that little will change.
And perhaps that is true.
But tonight, or this morning (I’ve lost track), all I can do is grieve for a country that thinks I’m not worth fighting for.