Please, America, Do Not Make a Liar Out of Me.
Please, America, I am on bended knee, humbled at your feet, begging you, do not make a liar out of me.
Back in February, when I was still working in the Watsonville school system,and when the Republican primary race was still a terrifying multi-person circus show, I comforted a little girl at school. She was about 7-years old, Latina, with Mexican parents. I found her on the playground, hiding under a tree, face buried in dirt. She was sobbing uncontrollably, doing that heaving thing where your lungs are spasming and you suck in throatfuls of air at once, hard and heavy. She could not get out a single word.
Finally, I turned to her friends: What is she upset about? One little girl, looking down and kicking her foot in the dirt, sheepishly spoke up.
Another little girl, Emily, told her that Donald Trump is going to become President and deport all of their families and they would have to stay here alone.
My heart sank. I felt that dropping feeling in my gut. This is what I had been fearing all along, that Trump’s hateful and dangerous rhetoric would eventually make it’s way back to many Latino children I loved in Watsonville.
But, this was back in March, when Trump’s wins were scant and still inconsequential, when even the most schooled Republican pundits where just waiting for him to implode any minute now, when I was sure there was simply no way. I was confident in my country, sure that soon voters would give him the boot.
I assumed that authority grown-ups feel when they assure children there is no monster under their bed and that watermelons will not grow in their stomachs. The world just does not work that way. I explained to the little girl about the primaries, that Donald Trump was not even running for president yet, that first he would have to be chosen by a group of people, and that he was not even going to be chosen for that. He surely was not going to ever be president, and, most importantly, he was not going to deport anybodies family.
Then, I watched in horror as all contenders dropped out, and then again when Trump was irrevocably conferred as the nominee this summer. I felt this terrible feeling in my stomach. I assured that girl that he would never even get nominated, and he did. I lied to her. And since then, he has gotten far too close to the White House for many of our tastes.
So please, America, do not make me a liar again. Please, I am begging you, vote on Tuesday, and vote for Hillary Clinton. I do not want to just elect Hillary, I want to humiliate Trump, send him on his way shamefully with his tail between his legs.
Vote for Hillary because you love her and believe in her. Vote for her because you are a feminist and believe it is high time we get a woman in the White House. Vote for her because you think she will do great things for our country.
Or, vote for her because you are ambivalent about her but terrified of Donald Trump with any more power than he has already assumed. I recently saw a photo of a friend campaigning for Hillary in Nevada. I know my friend to be critical of Hillary. Nonetheless, there she was, gathered with a group of woman around a Hillary sign. The photo was captioned #IguessI’mwithher. I’ll take it.
Vote for her because you love Obama and want more of that. I understand the criticism of Hillary, but I just cannot embrace this “lesser of two evils” business. She is not perfect, but no politician is and that is the system we live in and we should certainly work on changing that. But, as someone who has run a very on the ground program, directly serving the children of farmworkers, I know that our President’s domestic policy has a profound and very real difference to millions of the most vulnerable people in our country. Because of funding for school-based health programs that the Obama administration opened up, I was able to be a part of a program that distributed over 2,100 pounds of fresh produce to children every week. For some of those kids, that food was the difference between dinner or not. Based on her track record, Hillary will continue programs like this and I think that is a good thing.
Or, vote for Hillary because she is the lesser of two evils. There is nothing wrong with that. Just remember that the other evil is an avowed sexist, committer of sexual assault, was enthusiastically endorsed by the KKK and wants to impose authoritarian rule with no regard for the Constitution.
Or, vote for Hillary because your favorite celebrity told you to. Like Beyonce, or Pharrel, or Le Bron or Amy Poehler or Samantha Bee or Louis CK or Amy Schumer or any of the nightime talk show hosts.
Vote for Hillary because, like me, you love a good pant suit and if she wins on Tuesday, you will be purchasing your first.
Or, vote for Hillary on behalf of the millions of American in this country who would be negatively, and disastrously impacted by a Trump presidency. By my estimations, this is any woman, any person of color, any immigrant, any disable person, any young person, or, given his views on climate change, any person who breaths air. It is all of us. And it is most certainly that little girl who was crying on the playground. If you have no other reason than that, vote for Hillary on behalf of that little girl and her family. I can only imagine what she is feeling right now.
So, please America, do not make me a liar once again. If you have not done it already, do your sacred duty and vote. Vote for Hillary Clinton.
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