230 days, 4 hours, 28 minutes and 55 seconds
Since That Man officially became the President of the United States of America.
I told myself I would write about this at the six month point, but July is my birth-month so forget that. August was the last bit of summer so I couldn’t think about all the things I need to think about to write this and taint memories like that. In the past week, September has let us all know that she will Not Be Ignored. She is cold. Which makes me think about homeless people that none of us seem to center enough in our justice, and all the pop punk I used to listen to, and my old job at my college Women’s Center for some reason.
I had the most amazing bosses there. We spent a lot of time talking about intersectional justice, and what it would look like if we could get it right. Every time a liberal tells me that love will win, or that we must fight with love, I try to reconcile those two things in my head. Is love what it looks like when we get it right? Am I really The Real Problem as all these internet trolls would have me believe; what with my relentless dedication to call out culture? Have I alienated the friendly whites?
Today, it is warm again. I’ve been lounging around most of the day, ate a 20 piece chicken nugget with no regard, have plans to make cornbread and fried chicken for dinner but eat ice cream first. I’ve been listening to Beyonce, and Sza, and noname on repeat. In an announcement of a review of Obama-era sexual assault guidance, Betsy DeVos said “if everything is harassment, nothing is”. There is no part of me left unscathed by the policy of this administration. We were once so hopeful, weren’t we? I hope somewhere out there you still are. I have no desire to love today. My blood is attempting to escape my veins. Have you ever seen a body willing to sacrifice itself? It walks gingerly as if not to damage the goods before the offering.
Today I did not attempt to gather myself. I’ve stopped saying how I feel about what’s happening because I no longer know. The word disgust starts to lost its meaning. At what point does this become the status quo? Has it always been this bad? I’ve never been more fearful of being correct. If love is what gets it right. I want you all to know that not all love is toxic. We don’t have to love things that want to swallow us whole.
On the day that love wins, we will cast Tina Fey and her sheet cake following onto an island and tell them to stay indoors while we threaten their means of survival. We will tell them to learn to love the beasts that don’t bother with sheep clothing. We will punch EVERY. SINGLE. NAZI. We will stop pretending there is a middle ground. We will stop worshiping Barack Obama. We will stop worshiping Bernie Sanders. People will be decent, or be gone. Not everyone is worth loving, and that is okay. We will love ourselves too radically to love them anyways. We will learn to stop saving the asshole that keeps putting holes in the boat. We will push him into the water.
There is no passive love like the one we will have for self. We will love each other fiercely, readily, but never more than self. We will learn that forgiveness requires genuine regret. We will learn that forgiveness is not given when 9 bodies are not yet cold on the floor of a Charleston church where the devil himself did not bother to repent his sins after delivering slaughter as if it were sacrifice. We will learn that there is no getting over slavery, not only because we are still oppressed, but also because our ancestors deserve memory.
On the day that love wins, we will be honest about this trauma. We will take a part the grenade before it implodes on another generation. We will give birth to babies and not coffins. There will be joy, there will be love, but it will be earned.
Today is not the day that love wins. Today is a day to fight for a love that is deserved and not freely given. Today sexual assault survivors were told that their attackers mean more, again. Today we were told we live in a world where “everything” is harassment. Where everything is force, and pain, and trauma. By people who will never understand how triggering that is. By people who will mock us for being triggered.
We will not all survive this. I will not pretend that casualties aren’t already happening. I will promise, though, that I will not love away your memories. I will not forgive your murderers. I will not forget this pain. I will give you a splendid funeral, and on the day that love wins, it will be because they have paid.
230 days, 5 hours, 15 minutes and 25 seconds