handshake-1830762_1920

It’s pretty certain that Donald Trump will be our next president, as embarrassing and horrifying as that is.  Although I hold a glimmer of hope there will be a miracle, such as electors coming to their senses based on his horrifying decisions since the election, that seems about as likely as a big lottery win.  I’m left with the question of what I will do to ensure this tragic choice does not ruin our country for the foreseeable future.

DEBORAH G. HANKINS

DEBORAH G. HANKINS

For the first time in my life, it seems I’ve become an activist.  I breezed through the Vietnam War protests cocooned in a small public university tucked into a rural corner of Virginia, and did my civic duty by dating and corresponding with various young men fighting that war. 

PROTESTING FOR WHAT YOU BELIEVE

PROTESTING FOR WHAT YOU BELIEVE

Now, I feel the necessity of making my voice heard in protest in whatever way possible.  Most of us will not be able to run for a public office but all of us can influence a small group of people right where we are.

While your choices may well be different from mine, I’d urge any reader of this piece to identify steps you can take to prevent the tragedy we fear.

A lot of my actions have taken very little effort on my part.  I’ve signed online petitions for issues which I support.  I called the offices of Senators in my state to express my opposition to Steve Bannon’s presence close to Donald Trump based on his past connections to Breitbart News.

I’ve chosen two national organizations to support financially based on my concerns.  The ACLU and Southern Poverty Law center seem to me to be at the forefront of opposing upcoming challenges to those personal freedoms we’ve come to take for granted.  Other friends have chosen Planned Parenthood or other organizations which support freedom of choice for women.  It’s not really as important which organization you choose as that you choose at least one to support.

I’m making plans with a group of friends to attend the Women’s March on Washington on January 21.  I’m never demonstrated before, and I probably should do so while I can physically manage it. If you’d like to participate in some way, I suggest you Google it and then follow the resulting links to see what events close to you are planned.

MARCH ON WASHINGTON

MARCH ON WASHINGTON

There are state and local events which will be easier and less expensive if you can’t invest the time and/or money to go to Washington D.C.  It’s important to know you can participate even if you aren’t female, also.  All you need to be is a supporter of sanity in this currently misguided country.

I’ve discovered a local service with serious shortcomings and contacted my representative on the local level to effect changes there.  After speaking to the director, with disappointing results, I’ve gone “higher” and I’ll be following up on that contact.  He was most responsive and seemed to welcome my ideas.

I’ve contacted our local Democratic Party chairman and asked for information on how we can make a difference in our corner of the country.  I’m disappointed in the lack of response after three days, but I won’t give up!

I sincerely hope every reader of this article will take similar actions. This is not a time to stand idly by and then complain about the outcome.

volunteer-1326758_1280