My little girl… my smart, brilliant, bright future. I’m committed to always telling you the truth, even when it’s difficult. You deserves the truth and sheltering you will only serve to preserve your privilege instead of empowering you to be an ally & a helper. So the truth, my precious baby girl, is that the new president is not a champion for you and the most powerful country in the world is full of people who are not here for you either. But I am. I am always here for you and together we’ll be here for all of the other communities, genders, religions, and races that were abandoned today. And I am so sorry, little one. You deserve so much better than this.
I worry you might get confused… that you could fall for sexist, misogynistic, xenophobic or racist ideas. Because there seems to be so many flying around these days. Please know that those who treat others poorly due to gender, disability, religion, race, sexual orientation, etc. are acting out of ignorance and fear instead of love. We must show compassion for their ignorance, while, at the same time, protecting ourselves and standing up for others who are targeted.
I hate that one day you will realize that there never has been a female president of the United States and, like I did when I came to this realization, you will likely feel hurt and shocked. I clearly remember feeling like I had been lied to. So I will be straight up with you; as a woman, you will have to work harder to achieve success. You will encounter insecure asshats around every corner who will be threatened by your intelligence and will discount your opinion because you are female. You will be judged more harshly than men on your appearance and for speaking up assertively. I hope this news doesn’t make you think that women aren’t capable of leading our country, because we absolutely are. We are worth every bit as much as any man. It is a shameful fact that we continue to strive to be treated as equals. You must understand that this country is not and never has been perfect – it’s a work in progress and it’s up to you & I to continue moving it forward in the right direction. This is a huge weight to put on your shoulders but please know that I’ll do everything in my power to lead the way for you and to fan the flames of desire, empathy & service.
I am committed to raising you to value yourself. I will make certain you know that you are worthy of love and respect. I will teach you to protect your body & heart. I will support you in taking up room, speaking your truth & standing your ground. I will teach you to love. All people, regardless of the color of their skin, gender, religious beliefs, sexual orientation or where their birth certificate says they’re from. I will teach you how important it is to be an advocate for humanity. Not just the portion of humanity that benefits you.
I will teach you that when you are silent during moments of injustice, you are siding with the oppressor. I will teach you that walls divide people and by their nature cannot bring us closer. I will teach you that being born in a privileged country doesn’t make you superior, it makes you more obligated to help others who are less fortunate than you. And that just because someone holds the most powerful position in the world, does not make that person right, just or fair. With every fiber of our beings we will continue to do whatever we can to uphold and uplift justice & inclusion & fairness & kindness & equal opportunity for all. Your voice and actions can change the world.
Our progress as a nation is something you can be proud of. As you grow up, it’s important you understand not only the dark parts of America’s history, but also the bright moments where we moved forward. Once upon a time in our nation, black people were the legal property of white people and only white men could vote. Interracial marriage and gay marriage were illegal. Women had to resort to dangerous and illegal “back alley” abortions to terminate unwanted pregnancies. We changed all that. Our history has progressed imperfectly, but make no mistake about it, it has progressed – and that simple but glorious fact should always give you hope. Do not let those fighting against this progress convince you that they are the only ones who love their country. Fighting to make our nation more inclusive and more just is one of the highest forms of patriotism I can imagine. If you fight for fairness and justice, you will make me proud and you will make our country proud. You will be a bright light in our nation’s still- unfolding story.