I pinned it to the corner of my collar and wondered if anyone would notice or ask. I didn’t expect it, I imagine not a lot of people at my work understood the significance. When the UK voted for brexit people wore safety pins to let minorities know they were safe allies in the UK. They did this because people were afraid of the hate that had blinded the people around them.
I’m doing this because nobody has come up with a new thing for the US yet and it still kind of works. I’m wearing a safety pin because the horrible sheriff we just voted out may become head of the justice department as Trump fills his cabinet with friends and lobbyists. I’m doing this because a coworker with a young daughter voted Trump. Because apparently in this country sexual assault and being backed by a literal hate group isn’t as bad as being a politician that lies.
I watched the election results, terrified and crying a few times. I cried the next morning too in the car, alone. I’ve had trouble eating and sleeping. Why? Not for me. I passed (more on that at the end). I cried because the beautiful creative people I follow on twitter, the writers and comic artists and creative people who are succeeding at making the world a better place by bringing LGBT and minority voices to the front, are in danger now. They may lose health coverage because they’re self-employed, some of them are LGBT, some of them are minorities. One of them has been devastated for days because people want to take away her chance to marry a woman she loves if she finds one, or adopt a child.
Even the ones that would be okay are upset because they see how this will affect the people around them. I’m upset because the people I watch push society forward and force us to progress and be better, are being told they’re not valid people because they’re not in the privileged group.
This election undoes a lot of good work in making us a better country. It validates the KKK by telling them that yes we believe in the guy you believe in. We’ll survive it as a country, and things will get better again, but I wonder what we’ll have lost forever in the meantime. Who will we lose forever to hate and fear?
I’ve been privileged my whole life. Not rich, but not poor either. I’m white which gives me an advantage because nobody suspects anything bad of me from my appearance. I’m a woman but I think it will take more than 4 years for them to get to the point of trying to take away my right to vote. I’m bisexual, but I fell in love with a guy so I never had to tell anyone. I would’ve been accepted by my family easily I know, and at least some of my friends. But I never said anything because I passed since I was in a straight relationship. I didn’t want to paint a target on myself that might make me not pass. Now I realize I should have said something long ago, because passing isn’t enough. Passing is being a coward and letting others fight their battles alone.
I wore a safety pin to work today because even though I passed I’m scared and I want others who are scared to know they’re not alone. America will be great again, not because of Trump, but because we’ll overcome the hate and discrimination as a country and be stronger and more whole then ever. It’s just going to hurt a lot.