It is difficult to list or discuss why Donald Trump won this election, and not because I don’t understand the reasons, but because I know once I list them, I have to accept the reality that hate trumped love in this election.

I’ve thought about the results for a few days now and like a bad breakup emotions come in waves. As soon as I feel the election is past me, something will trigger the reality of my situation. On November 8, 2016 America broke up with me. I was committed to the American Dream and equal rights. I’ve been an exemplary member of my community –I’ve worked hard, paid my taxes, given back. Going into this election I felt in love with a country that shares my values of inclusion, compassion, respect, dignity. Going into the election, I felt proud that the greatest country in the world was about to make history and a powerful statement of our joint beliefs. But today…

I’ve read about Latino students in Redding being handed deportation letters . I’ve read about a Muslim teacher told to hang herself with her headscarf. I’ve read about the KKK threatening black men with beatings for “making eyes” at white women. You don’t have to look beyond Donald Trump to see hate toward women, disabled people, and Mexicans in this country.

Yet, hope is the last thing to die, and it’s grasping for hope that I would like to offer up an idea. Let’s give hate an equal and opposite reaction.

Here are 3 things you can do to voice your opinion and make a difference right now.

  1. Wear a safety pin – Express your solidarity to those who are suffering from these hate crimes.

    Take a picture and use social media to express your views.

    Don’t forget to tag all of your local politicians. Note sure who they are? No problem. Click here and enter your city, state and zip (you don’t have to enter your street address)

  2. You don’t have to be 18 to call, write a letter or send an email to your state senator. Their job is to represent their constituency, and your vote gives them the power to do that.

    Exercise your voice now, exercise your vote as soon as possible.

    You don’t know who your senator is? No problem. Click here and select your state to view your senator and their contact info. Note sure what to say? Leave a comment with your contact info and topic of interest and I will share the letters that I have written on those topics.

  3. DON’T STOP. You won’t see immediate change.

    Change takes time, and nothing worth fighting for comes easy or over night.

    Every time you see something you disagree with take action. Don’t be silent witness. The louder we are in protecting our values, the more power and voice we give to the officials that represent us.

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