A lot of post-election commentary has been written dissecting “what went wrong” with the 2016 presidential election. I don’t think any thing went wrong. I think liberals didn’t understand the extent of the racism, sexism, fear and disillusionment in this country.
Among full- and part-time workers in the U.S., blacks earn just 75% as much as whites in median hourly earnings and women earn 83% as much as men (source: Pew Research Center). This isn’t anecdotal; it’s a sad fact that minorities and women have moaned about but accepted for far too long. Racism is a fact. Sexism is a fact. And the results of the presidential election prove it.
As a “cool girl” who likes to hang with guys, I give men the benefit of the doubt that they feel women are their equals. Even when it’s pretty obvious that a guy doesn’t even have real friendships with females, I’ll socialize pleasantly with him knowing that we’re not likely to ever have a meaningful conversation. (To be fair, most of the men I interact with respect and like women.) In the past, I thought that calling someone sexist said more about me than it might about them. Labeling someone sexist seems petty, spiteful, bitter (a term people use to belittle women and minimize valid and reasonable ideas). But except in a few token cases, though I’ve racked my brain for an answer, I can find no other explanation for the outcome of the election other than racism and sexism. It’s so blatantly in my face, I cannot ignore it.
I’m going to lose friends. And I’m okay with that. What I’m not okay with is the idea that all opinions are valid. Racism is not a valid standpoint. Sexism is not an acceptable view. It’s impossible for me to tolerate sexist men any longer.
What am I going to do now?
Tell my daughters that I love them. Tell them that they are worthy of respect—both from themselves and from others—and that they deserve same pay as men. Tell my girls that speaking your mind doesn’t make you an arrogant bitch. Hug my family and friends. Be kind. Appreciate.
The next four years won’t be that rough for my family. My man and I are both educated and earn decent money (I would be making more if I had a penis, but that might make things awkward in the bedroom). We own our home and basically don’t have any worries. We will probably keep more of what we earn once taxes are cut—even though the country needs our tax dollars more than we need the few thousand we will save. I will travel less and spend more time at home with my family. I plan to hunker down and work hard and maybe close the income gap another 1% in 2017.
And have lots of hugs.