My usual post went out yesterday. If you’re looking for help writing an appeal, you can find it here.
But after last night, I had to write to you again. First, to recommend Vu’s post from last night: Disbelief, disappointment, and fear, and why our work is more important than ever.
As always, Vu’s is the voice of wisdom. And solace.
I also needed to add my own thoughts. I hope they help a little.
And meantime, be good to each other!
When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, “Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.
We all know Fred Rodgers’ words by now. They’re often recited after disasters – I think I first heard the quote after 9-11.
And I don’t think I exaggerate when I say that for many of us, this election was a disaster. The trauma began with the campaign. I had hoped it would end last night.
It didn’t end last night.
If you’re like me, you’re exhausted from a long night, grieving for our country, angry and in denial by turns. Those classic stages of grief are not falling in line this morning. Like so much else, they’ve been thrown over.
This will be a test of our country – a test of the country our founders created, the country we fought for against threats internal and external. It will be a test of our system of government. Our laws.
Are they strong enough?
I’m convinced one part of our society will be strong enough.
Our nonprofit sector has made “enough” into an art form. We’re the ones who are there to fix what’s broken. We throw ourselves over the holes in our safety net, hoping to save as many people as we can.
And too often, we do it MacGyver style, with paper clips, chewed gum and elbow grease.
We are the helpers. And we are needed now.
We need to focus on that, I think. No amount of anger or sorrow will change what’s happened to our country. Not unless we use them to spur our actions.
In the coming years, many people may be endangered. Immigrants. People of color. LGBTQ folks. Women. And as always, the poor.
Spend the time you need to grieve. Hold each other up. Put aside the small stuff and keep your eyes on the goal.
Then go back to fighting the good fight – with renewed conviction. Let your emotions fire your actions.