With the morning came new rhetoric: Affluent liberals are over-dramatic spoiled children who finally get to know what it feels like to lose. The bubble we've all created around ourselves has burst, and now we are faced with the bleak, dying sections of unhappy rural America who'd rather burn the system to the ground than suffer through another four years of being ignored.
But that rhetoric, like a lot of things in your life I'm now realizing, ignores a lingering and ruthlessly unfair problem: We would rather have an unqualified man who grabs, rapes, violates, bullies, and dehumanizes women as our leader than a uniquely qualified woman. What that says about a woman's worth, about your worth, makes me so sad and frustrated that I want to angry-dance in a barn somewhere. And while I know it can't mean much coming from me because I am biased, pretend that I am completely objective and looking at your life for the first time. You deserve so much better than this. You actively try to make the world a better place every single day, wrestling big, tangled issues like climate justice, city planning, and environmental policy. You speak up each day for people who can't. Your default setting is to help, and you've carved a career out of doing it. But most importantly, you've done it all while negotiating a minefield of people who treat you as though a young, beautiful woman can't be good at her job, who made you want to dye and cut your hair so that you'd be taken more seriously, who force you to ask yourself with each item of clothing you buy whether it will send a thousand unintended messages at work. I've never heard you complain about any of it -- this all comes to me peripherally in your stories as small moments tangential to the real plot of your day. This is just the way things are.