… that’s what I said to Kamel after I watched President Obama’s final speech. I know he meant to inspire action and civic duty, but this was my imperfect Camelot. And we’ve been defeated by the troll army. I’m watching a poised and graceful leader bow out to make way for a genuinely bad person who will represent us all.
“Why are you crying, Lauren?” Kamel said to me, with concern. Because how could I shed anymore tears? (How am I welling up just writing this?) How could I be holding my hands to my face and really crying, yet again?
“Because…” I stammered, choking back sobs, “…because this is it. It’s done.”
“No it’s not,” he said.
Sometimes I just want to scream at him that he doesn’t get it. YOU DON’T GET IT. How do you not see?
“Yes it is. It’s over. That was it. And now… and now it really is going to happen and it’s all bad things.”
“It won’t be that bad,” he says to reassure me.
“Yes it will,” I say as I walk to the bathroom to get my toilet paper because we’re all out of kleenex in our bedroom.
“It will be that bad,” I reiterated as a fresh wave of tears sweeps over me.
Because somehow, even if I don’t agree, even if he never had my vote and never will have my vote, we have ALL allowed him to be the leader of this country. He will represent us in foreign affairs, he will hold the pen that signs new laws, that takes away freedoms, that declares war. His stupid little fingers will spew nonsense on the internet that will mean more because he will very soon have the title of President of the United States behind his name. And everything he says and everything he has ever said will be immortalized because he will hold that office.
I know that President Obama wanted to inspire hope and action with his final speech, but I do not feel hopeful. I feel sad and tired.
There is a game being played and the players are too far away for me to reach. The outcome happens and I can’t change it or stop it or influence it. I’m not rich enough, I’m not powerful enough, I’m not important enough. My dissension is an annoying gnat on a hot summer day. I am David and the giant is so big that I am squashed by his giant foot before I can even load my sling shot.
I want to be proven wrong. I want to prove myself wrong. But the run away train seems too far ahead for me to catch.
I am the lone woman screaming in the gallery of Congress while they drag her away. The conversation pauses on the hearing floor. And Senator Graham chuckles under his breath before saying, “At least we’re clearing the room for you…” before continuing with his buddy-buddy questions to Sessions. Because they’ve known each other for years and who the fuck am I?