This isn't how it was supposed to be. Nov. 9, 2016 was supposed to be the day that parents in America woke up their children and told them that a new era was upon us, and finally, women were regarded as equals. Instead, we got Trump. My 7-year-old son woke up to the news and asked if this meant we were moving to Canada. This isn't something the parenting magazines prepared us for. But if you dig deep, there are some inspiring tweets that will help parents feel better about the election.
The New York Times' Katie Rosman summed up her feelings as a parent over a series of tweets:
My son was crying last night, he's terrified. This is what I told him: He will wake up and still have his parents and his sister and he will go to the same school and have his same friends. I told him that family is the building block of every society. It matters more than anything, including president & he has a solid family. My husband and I whispered about how our nation survived ppl driving a plane thru buildings and murdering 3000. America survived.
It's hard to feel brave today, but we have to do it, for our kids. Take hope in these parents' words:
We do need to fight harder. And that doesn't mean getting into fist fights on the playground, but making more noise. A lot of disappointed voters are planning on keeping their heads down today, but isn't that how we got here? Leading up to the election, people often quoted Pastor Martin Niemöller's poem:
First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out — Because I was not a Socialist.
Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out — Because I was not a Trade Unionist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out — Because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for me — and there was no one left to speak for me.
It's time to speak up.
The election is over, but America isn't over. Democracy isn't over. It might take four years, but we still have a chance to right the ship.
Never forget how America started. A small band of rebels fought back against the Empire that controlled them. And sure, England didn't have a Death Star, and Trump can't Force-choke anyone, but if we're going to put this in terms that our kids can understand, a Star Wars metaphor can't hurt.
The U.S. Constitution begins with the words "We the people." This is our country. There is no king, no dictator. Our future is up to all of us.
Love can still trump hate. Each and every one of us, parents and children alike, will lead by example. Bigotry and misogyny won't become the norm unless we let it. We'll teach our kids to be good people, just like we always have, and that message will spread.
America had gotten through plenty of dark days. We've made a lot of mistakes over the years. When our kids trip and fall, we don't tell them to stay down. When they lose a soccer game, we don't tell them to quit the team. We, as a nation, need to stand up, brush ourselves off, and try harder next time. For our children.