Post Election: A Letter to Our Grandchildren

By Susan Rose, SBWPC’s Founding Mother:

Dear Ben, Cole, Avi and Levi,

It was eight years ago that we first volunteered for Hillary Clinton’s campaign for President.  Like many we longed to see a woman become president, but we supported her for one essential reason- we believed in her ability to govern.

On Nov. 8th, our dream collapsed.  Despite the fact that Hillary won the popular national vote, she lost the necessary 270 votes in the electoral college.  Many like ourselves, who had worked so hard on her campaigns, were devastated and wept at the results.

Our new national leader is far from what we hoped for or aspired to.  The man elected to be president, Donald Trump, is a con man.  He knows nothing about governance.  Fear is present now in our communities and demonstrations are occurring daily.  Trump made many promises in his campaign and if he follows through here are some of the changes we can expect to see:

The repeal of the Obama Affordable Health Care Act (20 million Americans are now on this health insurance program) and elimination of funds for Planned Parenthood;

Undocumented families rounded up and returned to Mexico;  (Do you have friends whose parents are here illegally?)

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has an uncertain future and the recent Paris climate change pact may never be implemented.

We are fortunate to live in California, a state that has progressive values.  Trump’s campaign reeked of sexism, racism and xenophobia.  Anti-semitism reared its head also. His values are not ours, nor those of our democracy.

In California we live in a different reality. We believe in diversity.  This past week we elected an African American/Indian woman, Kamala Harris, to be our United States Senator.  In Santa Barbara where we live, we elected our first Latino to represent us in Congress and our first Latina to the State Assembly.

In these horrific times, we ask you to keep in mind the values your parents and grandparents have modeled for you.  There are many things we can do to counteract Mr. Trump’s platform of hate.  His world is not ours.

As long as Donald Trump is president, we can counter the fear and anger that exists in our country by focusing on our own communities.  Each of you has volunteered in the past to work in local organizations and programs.  Continue to donate your time to those who are less fortunate than you or who need your support and skills.

Remember to be considerate to your friends and family. Treat people fairly and equally.  Do your part to demonstrate that we are still a caring society.

Lastly and this may be the most challenging: always stand up for what you believe in.  Each of you has the power and strength to do so.  In her concession speech, Secretary Clinton said “fighting for what is right is worth it.”  We agree.

As the “next gen” it is your turn.  We are passing the torch.  Give of yourselves and you can make a difference.

With much love,

Grandma Susan and Poppa Allan