This election has yielded a lot of emotions. Fear, shock, rage. Fear of the unknown. Fear that our rights will be taken away. Fear that we are not safe. Shock at how our much our country is filled with hate. Shock that there is so much division and so much self-inflicted ignorance and so much of a power struggle. Rage that after how much and how hard we fought, they still choose not to hear us. They still choose not to see us. They still choose to believe we are not good enough.
This election was the result of various factors, but you cannot deny that sexism was one of them. You cannot deny that had Hillary Rodham Clinton been a white male, she would not have received one-tenth of the criticism she received during the campaign. You cannot deny that the result of this election was, in part, men telling us that a woman should not lead this country. You cannot deny that this election was, in part, men telling women their place.
And they have gone further than that. They have appointed men who do not believe women deserve control over their own bodies. They have appointed men who have abused women. They have appointed men who believe that women should have no say, no voice, no power.
Yes, I am angry. I am angry that hate trumped love and that America showed it was not ready for progress. I am angry that the most qualified woman lost to the least-qualified man. But I will not sit here and talk about how angry I am that this happened. I will not sit here and talk about how unfair it is. I will not sit here and talk about how disappointing it is. We already know all of this.
Instead, I will say this. To all my sisters, do not be discouraged. Do not fear. You are powerful beyond belief. You have been wronged more times than you deserve, but you are strong enough. You are smart enough. Those who put us down, who try to silence us and try to blind us and try to deceive us…they are threatened by us. They know how powerful we are, and they hate it. They will do anything to make us feel like we are nothing, but we will not give them that power. Whatever they may do to suppress our voice–that is nothing. They cannot make us feel inferior because we do not consent to that.
To my sisters….you are more brilliant than you know. You have a voice, and you have the power to make it heard. To make it heard so loud and so clear and so dominant that they will hear it everywhere, and it will make them tremble. You are mighty. You are great. You are formidable.
Do not believe them when they say that a woman must submit. Do not believe them when they say a woman’s only place is in the home and her only duty is to serve them. Do not believe them when they say that women do not have a right to their own bodies, to their own hearts, to their own minds. Do not believe them when they try to use your own religion or your own morals or your own values to justify your oppression. Do not let them tell you that women are inherently deceitful and inherently selfish because Eve tricked Adam. We are not deceitful. We are not selfish. We are not evil. We are valuable and good and strong and kind and compassionate and fierce. Remember, God needed a woman in order for Him to assume the form of man. Do not let anyone get in the way of your story.