Post Updated: November 26, 2016
I had another post ready for November, but the events of last week called for something else. I’m not exactly sure what. I suppose a space to grieve, reflect, and determine where to go from here.
I recently moved to Ciudad Juarez (ironically the biggest border crossing between Mexico and USA), and was excited to be back in DC for election week. I stood in line at the Oyster-Adams school, a bilingual (English/Spanish) school a couple of blocks away from my old apartment. It was a beautiful, crisp morning and the energy was positive, uplifting. People were smiling. Students were having a bakesale to raise funds for a field trip. The mayor came out to say hi. I ran into old colleagues and friends in pantsuits.
The night however, turned ugly. The mood at what was supposed to be a lively election party complete with a Trump pinata, turned dark.
Around three in the morning, Clinton called Trump to concede. By the time I got to work, Justice Reporter, Shaun King had already posted a series of reported hate crimes against POC and the LBTQ community across the country.
We woke up to a very different America.
For my immigrant, Muslim, Latino, African-American, LBTQ friends, the implications of a Trump presidency are life-threatening. And so a lot of my reflection in the past few days has been centered around on how to fight for the America that I have grown to love in the past eight years.
Here’s a running list of articles and resources that I have taken some strength and inspiration from:
1. Forget “Why”? it’s time to get to work by Anil Dash: Concrete habits that we need to create and sustain for the years of struggle to come.
3. Michael Moore’s widely circulated morning-after to-do list – time to make the Democratic Party work for everyone.
4. For parents and educators, “What do we tell the children?”
6. “Autocracy: Rules for Survival” – this especially spoke to me as people in Washington have begun already begun to normalize the transition.
8. Bernie Sanders’s op-ed “Where the Democrats Go from Here”
There is self-reflection among the food world as well. On how we can incorporate more activism into the food industry – to go beyond posting “food porn” and sipping expensive wine – and have meaningful conversations with family and friends that don’t tip-toe around divisive issues.
I also woke up to this call to ideas by Amanda and Merrill from Food52 on how shared meals can play a role in bridging the divide:
For my American friends who have family members, relatives and friends who voted for Trump, I would especially encourage them to have these difficult conversations around the table during the holidays. Having my own share of xenophobic and homophobic relatives in Pakistan, I know it’s not easy but if you can’t reach them, then others have no hope.
These are just some of my initial thoughts as I process my feelings and thoughts post-elections. If you have other ideas, resources and articles to share, please share them with me via comments or e-mail
Going to close off with a line from Remnick’s moving piece post-elections: