November 10, 2016
I can’t fix this for you and I can’t tell you what you want to hear.
This is to anyone who has ever, ever said to me “You could rule the world if you really wanted to!” who voted for or in any way enabled what happened this week.
I am pretty sure that this statement has never meant anything but a combination of “I have no actual clue either how the political world works, or who you really are,” and “I just want you to fix everything for me without me having to take seriously a single thing you say.”
And I am tired of your excuses and I am tired of you not taking responsibility for your world, and no, I cannot help you now.
Likewise, I never want to be told, ever again, “But you’re the smartest person I know!” or “You’re the most articulate person I know!” by anyone who is not prepared to listen to anything I have to say in the slightest regard.
You already know what I think. I’ve been saying it on loop since I was a child. Justice matters. Bigotry is wrong. It did not make a difference.
Now you have to make it right, because I tried.
I also can’t protect you from the emotional consequences of your choices. There’s something I’ve realized I do a lot, which is reassuring people that everything’s really all okay after they’ve screwed up and wasted my time or caused me a lot of hurt or extra work. And I can’t do that right now.
I can’t pretend not to be upset right now. I’m not going to pretend to you that it’s all okay. It’s not okay. It’s really bad, and I can’t tell you it’s not.
Now you’re baffled at the vitriol and the anger you’re seeing in your social media? Now you’re sad at the divisiveness?
You chose this. When you voted for a candidate relying on a rhetoric of violence against women, of open persecution of religious minorities, of expanding blatantly racist policing practices, of undoing hard-won civil rights protections for queer people, you chose this. We told you exactly what it was going to mean to the marginalized people in your life whose welfare you claim to care about if you voted for this man, and in full knowledge, you still did it. So you chose this.
You do not now get to expect us not to be upset. Your choices have had consequences. You don’t get to expect that I will hide those consequences from you. If you helped this happen, I have no comfort to give you. It is all going to people who are going to need it more.
This isn’t me giving up; this is me deciding to put my effort where I actually think it can do any material good. I’d already given some thought to it even before election day. First, I have a book to finish editing. It’ll be out this month. Then what I am going to do is figure out how I can best financially, concretely support the people who I know are about to be failed really hard by social safety nets and by the communities who apparently can’t quite decide whether some of us are fully human or full citizens or what, in surviving this.
This isn’t to make you worry about me. I always get through.
But you broke this, and now you get to fix it. I have other shit to do.