So, I'm going to be really honest, here. Last night I had a dream that A. and I were touring an elementary or middle school with a group of journalists and activists. It was a mixed group of people, but it turned out that they'd somehow been coerced into doing whatever Donald Trump wanted. They tricked us into getting separated from the group, and then I realized that it was so the KKK could come after my husband me. They chased us down hallway after hallway. Eventually we caught up with two of the journalists (one black, one white), and I looked at them closely to figure out if this was for real or a big joke. Their faces showed so much shame in themselves that I actually felt sorry for them. That only lasted a moment, though, because we were about to be chased again, and I woke up this morning mumbling, "I just want to go home!"
I don't usually make blog posts that are this personal, but I'm also not a person who has vivid dreams very often. Dreams are often windows into our anxieties, and I'd be willing to bet a lot of money that I'm not the only black woman, mother of mixed children, creative professional, or empathetic citizen living with these anxieties right now. If I was further down the scale of "others"... if I was Muslim, a first- or second-generation American Latina, or was here with my brown skin via a legally obtained visa, I probably would've been having such nightmares for weeks now. If I was a mother in Central America who'd made the impossible decision to send my pre-adolescent child toward the American border alone, without me, through areas more dangerous than most Americans can imagine, because the other alternative is to wait for my child to meet a brutal, inhumane fate of death or worse, I'd be out of my mind with grief and confusion.
Is this what America has become? A place of nightmares instead of dreams? A place that frightens its own citizens rather than inspiring them to work together for a better future? Does our country's current behavior match its expectation that it is entitled to be a leader and example for the world to follow?