I get it. You’re afraid. Angry. Grieving. In shock.
Fear is not a plan. Fear does not beget the strategies that will liberate us.
Fear and pain do call for radical pause, tenderness, divine love and compassion.
Fear and pain do call for a coming together in circle to witness and to be witnessed.
Fear calls for healing and a reckoning.
"Life is a hard battle anyway. If we laugh and sing a little as we fight the good fight of freedom, it makes it all go easier. I will not allow my life's light to be determined by the darkness around me."
A white supremacist, misogynist, xenophobic, trans/homophobic Cheeto is now the president.
This Cheeto is a collective projection from our subconscious. The shadow. An easy target for much more complex and sobering realities that we must also confront. This is not about 3rd party voters, the folks who chose not to vote or campaign strategies.
White supremacy won last night. It has been winning for some time in fact. The Cheeto won because of voter disenfranchisement, repression and the gutting of the Voting Rights Act. The Cheeto won because of the very real legacies of genocide, theft and slavery.
The Cheeto won because some of y’all been living in a Neptunian dream instead of the reality that many of us (black, indigenous, latinx, arab, middle eastern, asian and pacific islander, poor, disabled, queer, and trans) know which is full of terror and a whole bag of Cheetos.
Denial and dissociation while important, valid and protective coping strategies on a personal level are no longer acceptable collective strategies to address the underlying issues that elected the Cheeto.
“No, I'm not an American. I'm one of the 22 million black people who are the victims of Americanism. One of the 22 million black people who are the victims of democracy, nothing but disguised hypocrisy. So, I'm not standing here speaking to you as an American, or a patriot, or a flag-saluter, or a flag-waver -- no, not I. I'm speaking as a victim of this American system. And I see America through the eyes of the victim. I don't see any American dream; I see an American nightmare.”
~ Malcolm X, Ballot or the Bullet, 1964
The Cheeto is president so that we can collectively WAKE THE F*CK UP!
This is not about "conservative red necks" who, while frightening, are not nearly as scary as the white and white-aspiring liberals who actually believe this system is anything more than rigged. Those who boldly support the “America” of the Cheeto have made themselves known. The others (so-called liberals and progressives) do not know that their disowned shadow is also to blame for this and that they are also responsible.
Those of us who have been speaking the truth about these things are now having more of an impact. Better late than never. After the shock, grief, and fear subside, each of us will have to be accountable for the ways that we are complicit, contribute to and benefit from:
Destruction and theft of the land
This is a collective struggle and responsibility. So while I love hearing all the think pieces about why this happened… what I love even more is knowing what YOU are going to DO about this Cheeto situation. What actions are you gonna take to address the hatred and violence this country is founded on? Maybe some of y’all ain’t there yet and that’s ok. It’s important to practice deep presence with all of your feels before you jump into action anyway. But those of us who can, either now or soon, must BE different. DO different and DO BETTER.
“If you hear the dogs, keep going. If you see the torches in the woods, keep going. If there's shouting after you, keep going. Don't ever stop. Keep going. If you want a taste of freedom, keep going.”
As a healer, I know that much of my work in the coming days will be to offer support, and hold deep and wide space for people who are feeling lost, hopeless and defeated. Our work as healers is not only crucial but even more necessary now as folks are experiencing a deeper level of emotional and spiritual crisis. I am calling on all of our spiritual warriors past, present and future to come together, fortify ourselves and each other to sustain the laser like focus of black women warriors like Harriet who understood the stakes, what we stand to lose, and chose our liberation anyway.
On an astrological note:
It is not lost on me that is all going down while the Sun is in Scorpio. Scorpio is about deep transformation that only comes through death and decay. Power. The darkness. Shadow. The taboos. All the things we like to keep hidden. The ways we are entangled psychologically with another.
As a historian, I am also very aware that the gains we have seen in recent mass movements for liberation will be met with “whitelash” (Thanks Van Jones). The state will concede nothing without a fight. Some of us have been ready for this and are ready to fight. Some of us are tired and disillusioned. There is room for all of us and all of our reactions to the new world that the Cheeto is trying bring forth. Check in around your capacity. No like for real. Be honest about what you need and what you can show up for. Part of having each other’s backs, is knowing who can play what roles when and knowing when to tap the f*ck out. If you have the capacity to show up for others, organize, create and build, then do. But when you need a break take it. And don’t feel no ways about it. If you never have the capacity to do these things that’s all good too. Cuz your personal healing does impact the planet in revolutionary and magical ways and is equally important. We need all of it. But first we need to know what we need.
"Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. Find out just what any people will quietly submit to and you have found out the exact measure of injustice and wrong which will be imposed upon them, and these will continue till they are resisted with either words or blows, or with both."
~ Frederick Douglass, If There is No Struggle, There is No Progress, 1857