I have heard a few people call today - Inauguration Day 2017 - a “national day of mourning.” To be blunt, this distresses me. Mourning is about loss, grief, sadness. It’s about crying and desperation and anger. Mourning is about working through the pain until you feel better. But worse than all of that, mourning is a cop-out. Mourning says that you had no control over what happened, and that you have to accept the outcome and move on.
Thinking of today as a “national day of mourning” is giving up. Thinking of today as a “national day of mourning” is letting hate win.
I challenge you to instead think about today as an opportunity and a chance for growth.
If you aren’t happy with the election results, congratulations! You are part of a not-so-exclusive club called The Majority of Americans. But if you still believe in democracy, if you are willing to put in the work to make a change, if you are energized by the chance to rebuild and revolutionize – well, then you are part of a much, much smaller club.
Welcome! Now let’s get to work.
Warren and I waited until today to announce that we are expecting a baby because we want to emphasize that life as we know it is. not. over. Not for any of us. Not if we are willing to stand together and fight.
Despite any and all odds (and it’s important to note here that we are lucky and grateful to have far fewer stacked against us than many Americans and American hopefuls), we pledge to raise our child to be curious, to be humble, and to be loving. Despite the rhetoric of some of those in power when s/he is born, we will teach our child to be kind, compassionate, and a critical thinker. We will instill in her/him the understanding that there is nothing more “normal” than being different and that our diversity make us stronger. We will teach our child to not give up in the face of bullies, no matter how loud or powerful they may be.
We will teach them all of this by example.
Today marks the end of an important time in American history. But it also marks the start of another. We don’t know how strong we are until our strength is challenged.
“How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.” - Anne Frank