Before the election Donald Trump whined and threatened that if he wasn't elected he would refuse to concede and warned everyone repeatedly about voter fraud. But when the candidate everyone said they were going to vote for, that millions of Americans did vote for, the candidate who is dignified and qualified, when that candidate unexpectedly loses, we aren't supposed to question whether or not the election was rigged?
I know for a fact that my ballot wasn't counted. I live in Pima County in Arizona, a highly democratic county, and thousands of early ballots like mine remained uncounted when they called the state for Trump. There's something pretty fishy about that.
In the end it turns out that supposedly Hillary Clinton won the popular vote, but lost the election due to a technical error called the electoral college. If the situation were reversed would Trump have gracefully conceded? There's no damn way he would have! Hillary Clinton may have just been too damn tired of taking all of the abuse to keep trying, but I'm too damn mad and there is too much at stake to let her go.
All over the country people are protesting. And they should. We were robbed of our democracy last week. Not everyone can get out to protest in the streets, but people like me who have young children and busy lives, we are protesting in our own way. Not in the streets but on social media, with our friends and families. We can't let this happen to our country. We are asking ourselves, what do we do now?
I have been pondering this question for many days now and here is my answer to what we do:
We fight with everything we've got. We have too much at stake to sit this one out. How do we fight?
#1. Media attention
We need true investigative journalism to look into every aspect of this. We need to declare that there has been voter fraud and start investigating. We need to investigate both Republicans and Russians and look into how they might have manipulated this election. We need to investigate voter suppression. We need to investigate Trump's fraud cases with Trump University and the Trump Foundation. We need to investigate Trump's sexual harassment and rape charges. We need to investigate whether or not we can charge Trump for hate crimes for instigating violence at his rallies. We need to further investigate the role Comey had in throwing this election with his pointless email announcements. We need to investigate whether Trump's business relationships are too much of a conflict of interest for him to be eligible for the role of president. We need to investigate the role of the electoral college and whether that's been abused as well as how we can overturn it. We need to investigate this entire election with thorough reporting.
#2. Legal action
We need to follow up all of this journalistic investigation with legal actions against all of those responsible for intentionally impeding the election. Voters in each state need to hold their states accountable for properly counting their ballots. We need to hold Comey accountable for colluding to influence an election. We need to hold Trump accountable for all of his crimes. We need to hold the Republican Party accountable for their gerrymandering and voter suppression. This is the United States of America. Let's sue these assholes!
#3. Protests and petitions
We need to continue peaceful protests and signing petitions. We need to demand that the electoral college be disbanded and the popular vote instated. We voted and we deserve to be heard. This is our country, and we're not giving it up without a fight.
There is a lot that needs to be done, and of course we all have busy lives. Pick one action and run with it. Call your local news station or paper and ask them to investigate this election. Talk to the lawyers you know about pursuing the legal aspects of this. If you can't make a protest in person, sign a petition. Do what you can do and know that no matter what happens you can feel better for having tried.
I leave you with this inspiration from Bob Marley, "Get up, stand up, stand up for your rights...get up, stand up, don't give up the fight!"
Since becoming a mom to a little boy with Trisomy 21 I have written a lot about Down syndrome and disabilities. I am a storyteller, wife and mom to a teen and a toddler. Life is busy!