Wake up….wake up and breathe

Published 10:45 am Monday, November 14, 2016

I was all set this week to share my college basketball predictions with you, but then along came Tuesday.

You do remember Tuesday, don’t you?!?

That was the night – well, Wednesday morning – that Donald Trump was elected President of the United States of America and a lot of people I know across social media went into mourning.

I’m not the world’s greatest social media follower but a lot of my friends, black people, foreign-born people, people in poverty, gay people, and all people of every color in the rainbow in this country – and it’s a clear consensus (kind of like the election results!) – Most of them are absolutely horrified by Trump’s win and its potential ramifications.

But I’m the optimist; silly me, still believing in Santa Claus.

People, especially you distraught Hillary Clinton supporters, there’s still hope!

Well, maybe.

Okay, so the “bad hombre” won, thanks to his “basket of deplorables”. Platitudes like, “It’s going to be OK”, or “If we’ve survived this and worse, we can survive anything”, all probably seem pretty hollow right now, especially for those people who see Trump’s win as a confirmation of America’s deeply embedded racism.

And so, the unthinkable has happened: Donald J. Trump, that racist, sexist, xenophobic candidate of the Republican alt-right, Mr. “I-know-more-than-the-generals”, has been elected your new Commander-In-Chief.

Across social media, plenty of anti-Trumpers are expressing shock and disbelief, unable to recognize the America they thought they knew.

Well, wake up, because this is the America people of color have always known. This is the America that has always existed in my lifetime.

But we have to start somewhere. We have to remember to do the ol’ Jerry Springer: “take care of ourselves and each other”. We must continue to build community, and hopefully weather whatever oncoming storm on the horizon.

But there wasn’t all hatred and vitriol on social media. Below are a few inspiring messages of love and hope from Twitter and Facebook, reminding anyone reeling from Trump’s win to just breathe:

We won’t always agree. But we have to work to disagree without tearing each other down. There’s too much at stake. We need each other.

This is the perfect time for people of color to unite as a whole! Please don’t let this defeat you. Let’s flip this negative into a positive.

Mourn, gather, organize, and repeat.

We were fighting yesterday. We fought today. We will fight tomorrow.

“It is better to light a candle than curse the darkness.” -Eleanor Roosevelt

Let me be angry about it, for a little bit.

I think this will force us to be in community in a way we never thought we needed to be before. I’m open to that.

At this moment, we must stop pointing fingers at each other. Instead, we must organize and fight for the world we want to see.

My great grandparents were slaves. I choose to stay, to stand, and to fight.

How are you doing today? Please practice self-care if you can and need to.

Trump is president, but he’s not the only one in office. We have hope, my friends.

Sending you my love, we’ve been broken before, we’ve healed before.

I love you – boldly and proudly. We will endure. We will not break.

The sun is alive today and we are alive, still together and definitely stronger.  Wake up.

Yes, wake up.  Wake up, and breathe.

Gene Motley is a Staff Writer at Roanoke-Chowan Publications. Contact him at gene.motley@r-cnews.com or 252-332-7211.