After the US election on Tuesday, November 8th, 2016, I went to bed feeling very hurt, helpless and worried for the world. But when I woke up the next morning, the last thing on my mind was to stay in bed and be complacent. I was ready to take action. This past week I have kept myself busy peacefully protesting, volunteering, donating and spreading my love and support to whomever needs it. Now I’m bringing it to my blog as one of my Monday Meme blog challenges.
Here is a list of 15 things I plan to do over the next four years to help me get through them feeling like I did my part for humanity. I hope you take the challenge and do at least a few of them yourself:
- Vote!: We need to make sure we all register to vote and encourage all of our family and friends to do the same. Once we do that, we need to make sure we vote, and vote in every single election. Not just every 4 years but all the elections in between. One of the easiest ways to do it, sign up for mail-in or absentee ballots, they come straight to your door. You just fill them out and mail it in for every election. You can also provide your cell phone number for election text reminders, or volunteer as a poll worker for your next local elections.
- Show your support and speak out: If you see harassment or bullying going on in the real world, speak out! Wear a safety pin on yourself and stand up for those that are afraid of being targeted so they can feel a sense of relief if they see it on you. Stop your fellow Americans in the streets, hug them and tell them you support them, you want them there and you are there for them.
— Safety Pin America (@SafetyPinUSA) November 11, 2016
- Help combat global environmental issues like climate change: The best thing we can all do to combat climate change is to change our eating, drinking, and energy consumption habits. A Global Environmental Scientist shares a list of 3 things in 5 categories everyone can try to do to live a more sustainable life. You can also contribute to Friends of the Earth which is the world’s largest grassroots environmental network, or volunteer with the NextGen Climate Action group which works to fight climate change through political action.
- Advocate for immigration reform and social justice: Donate to the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (Maldef) which is the nation’s leading Latino legal civil rights organization or Border Angels which is an all volunteer, non profit organisation that advocates for human rights, humane immigration reform, and social justice issues related to the US-Mexican border.
- Assist POC in America in the fight for their civil rights: Donate to the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (
NAACP) Legal Defense and Educational Fund or the Black Lives Matter Network which advocates for dignity, justice and respect.
- Protect Women’s Health and Reproductive Rights: Donate and volunteer at Planned Parenthood. This is not just about being pro-life or pro-choice, it’s about giving women the opportunities for proper healthcare and education. It’s about saving the lives of thousands of women across the nation!
- Help Sexual Assault Victims: Donate or Volunteer for RAINN (Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network) which is the nation’s largest anti-sexual violence organization.
- Support the LGBTQ community: Donate or Volunteer for the Trevor Project which is the leading national organization providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ) young people ages 13-24.
- Respond to the Refugee Crisis: Donate or volunteer at the International Refugee Assistance Project (IRAP), which organizes law students and lawyers to develop and enforce a set of legal and human rights for refugees and displaced persons.
- Help those that are living in poverty and going to sleep hungry at night: Donate or volunteer at a food bank. Find out how you can get involved on FeedingAmerica.org or United Nations World Food Programme, which fights hunger worldwide.
- Support Women in Government: Emily’s List is an American political action committee (PAC) that aims to help elect pro-choice Democratic female candidates to office because everyone should have the opportunity to be heard and make a difference. Click over and donate or run for office yourself!
- Fight bigotry and educate yourself and your family and friends: I truly believe that education is the key to acceptance and tolerance. If you are uninformed about a community, a religion, a movement, or a cause, educate yourself about them with valid, non-biased resources. Reach out to people in those communities and see if you can do anything to help or understand them better. You can also donate to The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) which pledges to fight hate, teach tolerance and seek justice.
- Take a break from Social Media: One thing I’ve learned over the years is that sometimes people online just won’t treat you as a human being. They can’t look into your eyes, see you breathing or see the pain that you or your family/community may be going through. They just don’t understand. Now during this political climate I feel it’s best, for our sanity, to either take a break from social media or remove those that just don’t have compassion or understanding for your cause. It’s not worth the effort to fight online, you need to focus on carrying this fight in the real world. Make your online friends and social media your safe place to escape to and continue your fight in the real world. Trying to get trolls or people that lack compassion online to empathize or understand your cause is just not worth the time and hassle.
- Be a positive role model online: If you do choose to stay on online, be a positive light. Share a virtual image of you wearing a safety pin to show your support for those that now live in fear. Pen a blog post similar to this to share organizations that you feel people should support. Stand up and speak out when you see online harassment. I speak from experience when I say that you will have such an impact on someone’s life when you stand up for them. I will never forget those that supported and stood up for me when I was harassed for posting a cultural picture on a muslim holiday. Thank you so much for that!
- Don’t lose hope: With all of the hate, harassment and chaos going on in the country and the entire planet, trying to live a fruitful and fulfilling life may seem futile. It’s not. The world needs every single one of us to come together and do their part; that’s the only way we’re going to get through it. Hand in hand, we can create the change we need and desire. So smile and try and make others smile by reading and sharing some funny Obama/Biden memes or turn the racist graffitti on the wall into something positive and educational.
If you see a swastika graffitied on a wall somewhere, turn it into a Punnett square and teach passing teens some bio.
— OhNoSheTwitnt (@OhNoSheTwitnt) November 14, 2016
This is my new challenge this week which I hope continues on for years to come. No matter who you voted for or what your beliefs are, I am sure you can find many things in this list to relate to or be supportive of. I hope you take the time to do this challenge, either by creating a picture of your virtual self sporting a safety pin and sharing it with words of support or writing a blog post sharing organizations that you think people should support. Then we can continue to focus on our fight in the real world by donating, volunteering, supporting and standing up for those that need us most. Don’t give up, stand tall and make your voice heard!
Thank you and much love! <3
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