opelessness is the new status quo. After the results of the United States presidential election, it felt like the nation was colored with sadness, anger, and fear. With our hands off of the wheel, we didn’t know how to possibly set the “American Train” back on course. We’ve taken the backseat. People have put their next four years on a timer, counting down the days until the United States can be saved.
That was how I felt after the election. I believed that we should “wait it out” and then get back to work. I’d get a sudden rush of hope when I’d pass an article discussing a revote on the election or a petition to sway an elector’s vote. But, more likely than not, Donald Trump will be sworn in come January 20.
Even so, I’ve come to realize that this is not the time to give up or be passive. If we do, many of the ideas of both President-elect Trump and Vice President-elect Mike Pence will be put in motion, with many of us merely helping their case. The day Trump won the election was just another indicator of the work that still needs to be done in America. I’m not speaking up for active protests or vocal revolts – instead, I’m advocating for actions to preserve and fight for equal rights for all people in the United States and the world.
The work towards change starts now. To truly make a significant impact, we must take great action. A simple #imstillwithher is not enough. Eventually, idly expressing ourselves online will only aid our president-elect’s blatant disregard of minorities in the United States. If we want to make a change, we need to start now and support organizations that are going to make a difference or that might struggle during these next four years.
If you don’t believe all refugees, living in and outside of the U.S., are part of terrorist action, then donate to the International Refugee Assistance Program. If you’re worried about women’s health, you can donate to or volunteer your time at a Planned Parenthood. If you believe in equal rights and support for L.G.B.T. folks, donate to The Trevor Project or the Gay and Lesbian Victory Program. If you think global warming is a real issue, donate to the Natural Resources Defense Council. There are a number of clubs here at Andover, such as S.T.A.N.D., Women’s Forum, G.S.A., and Eco Action, that are affiliated with the issues above and are making a difference on this campus. All in all, donating could be anything from money to time to energy – but simply taking an active approach makes all of the difference.
I’ve heard many people argue that, “Trump is our president and there’s nothing that can change that!” or that we should just “accept it.” And honestly, I do accept it. But the fact that he will take office does not justify having people’s identities and beliefs pushed aside for four years. For people who might not agree with Trump’s whole agenda for Americans, we can help the people and organizations listed above and others that will be struggling during our Trump presidency. Ditch the “thumbs up” and the “RT” in favor of contributing to the things that can make a difference right now. These next four years are what we make it, so my advice would be to take the wheel back and get to work.