a gay black woman's discovery of her jewish self

Fired Up and Ready to Go

Posted on: November 9, 2016

Angela Davis  Image by © Bettmann/CORBIS

Angela Davis
Image by © Bettmann/CORBIS

A wise man said that during his election and I will admit that having a Black man sitting as President in these United States for the last 8 years I have been complacent. It is a historic fact that our country is rooted in genocide, slavery, bigotry, racism, segregation and sexism. Having a Black man with Kenyan roots and an African name as our President led to an existence of rose-colored glasses.

I am continually horrified by the militarized policing of black and brown bodies and the hundreds of deaths that result in the police whose duty is to protect and serve. But the police weren’t bothering me, or my immediate family. Even when it was close, it was happening over there.

And today, after a second fretful night of sleeping, I wake up to a nation where over half of my “fellow” Americans have voted for a man who ran on a platform of bigotry, misogyny, hatred, fear and Islamophobia. This man who has been sued multiple times for racial discrimination, who has several pending sexual assault charges and child rape charges. A man who publicly boasted sexually assaulting women and then defended his words. A man who said publicly that women who have abortions should be punished and that Planned Parenthood should be de-funded. A man who mocked a disabled person and called our Vets weak for having PTSD. A man who has insulted women and reporters and anyone who stood in his way. A man who wants to ban all Muslims from entering out country and wants to ID and track those who already live here. A man who called Mexicans rapists and drug dealers and who intends to build a wall and start mass deportations. A man who wants to repeal a health plan that covers millions of Americans who were denied coverage. A man who wants to repeal Federal Marriage Equality, thus taking away my freedom. A man who the KKK endorsed will be the president of the United States.

He’s not my president. A president is meant to unite the people, to bring them together, to celebrate differences and see them as beneficial. A president is meant to bring us into the future, not catapolt us into the past.

Last night my wife and I talked about what to do next. We could visit our family in Switzerland and stay for four years. We’re Jews, maybe we could make aliyah. The Canadian boarder is a few hours drive from our house.

In the end we’ve decided that we need to fight and I’m scared for my life. I’m physically exhausted and have cried violently and desperately. I worry for my family living in a state that turned Red with Hate. I worry for my parents who lived this before I was born. I worry for my wife and I and the children we want to have. I worry for my Muslim brothers and sisters and my undocumented brothers and sisters. As I walked to my car this morning I worried it would be vandalized, our house targeted. I wanted to take my Hillary sticker off of my car to avoid being targeted and possibly harassed, but I left it on and I’m wearing a pin today.

My Ancestors who fled ancient lands in the Middle East and the pogroms and Hilter’s regime, my Ancestors who were brought here in chains, those who fought in the Civil War for their freedom, those who fought for the right to vote and gave their blood, their sweat, their tears, their lives for me to be able to proudly and loudly proclaim myself as a black, gay, Jewish woman require me to act now. I’m ashamed at my complacency, that it took this for me to feel the urge to act. But that urge is a raging fire burning in the tears that stream down my face.

The path has been laid by black and brown bodies long gone and those who experienced the History I learned of in school books, my job now is to follow that path and forge new ones. I’m lacing up my boots and dusting of a black leather jacket. I’m picking out my ‘fro and raising my fist. I’m heading to volunteer, to organize, to give of my money, my time, my body because the next four years will require a fight from us all. It will require us to lift one another up, to stand shoulder to shoulder and to look hatred in the eye.

I am afraid.

And I’m ready to go.


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