I’ll start out by saying that I’ve already cast my vote for Hillary Clinton and I could not be prouder or more excited or closer to the verge of tears. This has been a demoralizing, dark, difficult year or so for our country – faith in facts is at an all time low, ability to compromise or respect one’s opponents potentially even lower. And of course the most heartbreaking stories have been not the dumb fights, the horrible words, but how that rhetoric has affected our children. All year I heard elementary school kids talk about the election, threaten to leave the country because they were already so frustrated with politics. Friends who teach children of immigrants have students who are afraid they will be deported. Newspapers report that bullying and hate has increased nationally.
On my first week of teaching in Marseille, a port city with a very high North African Muslim immigrant population, I showed pictures of monuments in DC, telling them about the White House and answering their questions about the United States. Most wanted to know what my house looks like, or if I’m married. One boy in 3rd grade raises his hand to ask, “Is it true that the President of the United States doesn’t want any Muslims in the country?”
Just think about that. An 8 year old halfway around the world who speaks about 12 words of English is as confused about this election as you are. If that’s not proof that the entire world is counting on the American electorate, then I don’t know what is.
So please, tick whichever box you need to tomorrow, but I implore you to vote for compassion, for equality, for progress. Vote for the children who listen. Emails aren’t on the ballot, but so many people’s safety, self-worth, and constitutional rights are!!!! ❂