Like many, I went to sleep at 1:30 AM on Election Day 2016 in disbelief. I woke up scared and confused, worried for America’s future. Not necessarily because we witnessed what nearly all pundits thought would never happen, but that was part of it. More than that was the feeling that the entire momentum of the positive changes in the country was coming to a halt. And that many people who were previously marginalized by society for their hateful and hurtful viewpoints now felt vindicated to come out of the shadows.
In the days that followed I kept having a recurring feeling that I had to do something, take some action that would help to counteract many of the negative implications of the 2016 election.
We sent a few emails and invited people over to talk about what we might be able to do as ordinary citizens living in the DC metro area. With the support of Mark and several dedicated friends, CounterAct was born in early December 2016.
Counteracting policies and politics that could slowly dismantle the democracy and Constitution that Americans fiercely defend, but too often take for granted. Counteracting thoughts and actions that make immigrants feel unsafe in a land that is supposed to protect them. Counteracting words from people who think it is now okay to spread hate, lies and violence.
Last week, President Obama gave his farewell address. So many emotions washed over me taking in his words. . . “All of this depends on our participation; on each of us accepting the responsibility of citizenship . . . .” President Obama’s words and actions inspired me to keep on this journey, and to be even more fiercely committed to protecting and perfecting our American ideals and democratic system.
This week we will see President-elect Trump’s Inauguration followed by hopefully 500,000+ strong at the Women’s March on Washington, and 300+ Sister marches around the country. I believe that we have learned little over the past year if we think there is any other choice but to: Speak. Write. Act. Vote. March. March. March.
Join us. @CounterAct16 #CounterAct.