The polls were wrong. My friends and colleagues who said it could never happen were wrong. The guy I met on the plane last week who told me that America was changing and that the Trump campaign was the last gasp in the struggle to hold on to the old ways, well, he was wrong too, as it turns out. And sometime in the middle of the night last night, the votes were counted, the Electoral College votes were assigned, and the unthinkable, unexpected occurred.
“When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice: but when the wicked beareth rule, the people mourn” -Proverbs 29:2
That about sums it up for me. I mourn. I mourn the loss of the great dream that has been the America of my lifetime. I mourn the loss of the progress on racism, misogyny and hate that I have worked to create. And I mourn the future for children who will inherit this legacy.
But understand me, this is not mourning because a Democrat lost and a Republican won. And this is NOT mourning because a woman lost and a man won. This is not political or ideological in those ways at all for me. This is about caring for the outcast, the orphan and the widow. And recognizing that over the last several months, the outcast, the orphan and the widow have all been attacked and demeaned. And now those who have uttered those hurtful words are now in power. I mourn because I fear what is to come.
So now, I have a challenge, as do my friends an colleagues:
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.
Martin Neimoller lived it. And he recognized the failure of his contemporaries to live up to the challenge. I pray that we will do better.