Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Once Upon a Time

...in 2016, before the election, some my students asked me what I thought of Donald Trump.

This was in the dream-like days when I still believed Americans could not be hateful and stupid enough to elect this conman president, so I laughed.

"'Make America Great Again,'" I said. "What a joke. Make America White Again, more like."

To my surprise, half the class nodded seriously. I saw they liked the idea of that. I saw, in fact, that this was why they were voting for him. The inside of my stomach went a little cold at that moment.

I will never forget the way my brown students and my Latino/a students look at me, the mix of pity and amusement in their eyes. What world have you been living in, tonto? they were thinking.

Not this one. Not this one.


nicoleandmaggie said...

One of our Hispanic admin came by my office today to talk about the citizenship thing (she had been planning to vote this weekend, but realized from the schedule posted on my door that she couldn't, but that there were extended hours this week so she could). So did one of my international colleagues ("I had to leave the Chinese WeChat because there were too many Trump supporters"). I've been doing a lot of listening.

I've voted. I've registered voters. I've encouraged people to vote. I've given every single one of our majors information on early voting via email and via paper slipped into their mailboxes (thank you Dean's initiative on student voting). I've written letters and postcards and avoided texting or phone banking (my colleagues are sick of getting calls/texts). I've given so much money. I've replaced stolen signs for everyone in our neighborhood. I've called my senators and reps. And it is not enough. My sister has knocked on over 400 doors-- I should have been doing that (but I'm traveling again this weekend).

I don't know what else to do.

delagar said...

I don't either. I'm trying not to sink into hopelessness, but it's getting harder and harder.

nicoleandmaggie said...

Instead of going back home when I get into the airport where my sister lives this weekend, I'm going to canvass for voters with her.

My sister says that just giving people information on when/where/how to vote has been extremely welcome and helpful for people who might not have made it otherwise.

I am doing this because of the citizenship thing.

delagar said...

Oh, good!

The citizenship thing -- JESUS!

Bardiac said...

I've done canvassing, working with union folks mostly.

The last time I was this involved in election stuff was the Scott Walker recall, and given how that turned out, I'm worried. I just signed up to drive for canvassers. (Ringing doorbells is hard for me, as for most people, even though most people I've talked to have been very friendly and nice, even if it was clear they were voting the other way.)

delagar said...

Yeah, I have trouble ringing doorbells too, especially around here -- big Red town. Big Red State.

Anonymous said...

I've been knocking on doors since 1966. For me, it's easier than making phone calls, but I would never call it truly easy. But its' what seems to work.