Down With Trump/Up With Women

A special blog feature from Artistic Director Jordan Bean:

This post was originally published to Facebook along with this article, inspired by the Trump campaign and the presidential candidate's deeply held misogyny. 

I have always been very wary about the prospect of having children. One of my earliest adolescent memories was of watching terrorists fly planes in to the twin towers. I watched the close-up shots of human beings throwing themselves from windows to escape fire. I read about the chaos in the street, the incredible loss that so many experienced that day. In sixth grade I became crushingly aware of how dangerous the world was. I had been fascinated by travel, I had photos of Paris and Rome and other beautiful foreign countries on my walls. I wanted to go to all of them. I wanted to learn French. I watched foreign films more often than American films. My mother took me to Europe ten years after 9/11, and I fell in love with the whole ordeal of boarding the plane, hearing the different languages, learning about new cultures. Two days in to our trip to Paris there was a major terrorist threat to the city and half the places that we had planned to see were either closed down or swarming with police carrying machine guns. It was the first time since 9/11 that I had been that aware of terror, and I'd forgotten what it was like to feel unsafe. But here it was again, like an old, sick, leech of a friend. In my adult life it feels as if no week goes by without a national catastrophe. My generation's world has never been a safe place, and I have no interest in creating a new person only to subject them to this constant stream of horror and bad news. But because I am human, the instinct remains.

If Donald Trump is elected president, I will reject this instinct for the rest of my life. I do not want a child in his United States, or his world. The most basic human desire: to create a beautiful little version of yourself, to explode your heart with love for another person, to nurture, has effectively been ripped from me because there seems to be no hope left. Donald Trump has always been a monster, but now not only is he a spoiled, inarticulate, uneducated, angry moron with no political knowledge - he is proudly and aggressively the most immediate threat women face: a sexual predator. No kid deserves to be ruled by a predator. Nor does any adult.

My life and the lives of all the women you know are teeming with predators. We spend every waking second calculating how to avoid being in the wrong place at the wrong time because it is a guarantee - we have not just been told this, we know this from experience - that at some point in life ALL women WILL be assaulted, whether it be with words or with a body. If we haven't already, we will. We are taught from a very young age how to cover up, be polite, avoid the dark, avoid being alone, and on and on - to keep ourselves safe. We are taught that the world is looking AT US at all times, sizing us up, deciding what to do with us, where to put us, what to call us. We are taught that we don't have a say, that the world will do what it likes and we can only try our best to slip quietly by, under the radar. We can only attempt to avoid predators, for there is no controlling them.

Donald Trump is a predator. He is the man who sits outside of schools and waits to snatch kids up in his van. He is the bro at the party who won't stop pressuring you to drink. He is the friend who tells you to chill because catcalls are compliments. He is the family member who compels you to lock your door at night. He is the shadow that may or may not be following you home. He is the reason you carry your keys like a shiv. He is dangerous, and he wants to run your country.

While I have grown to love Hillary Clinton, I know that many people still see her as problematic. I understand that completely. But please do not allow her to be defeated by someone who BEGAN his campaign for president as problematic and has since become a snake, slowly suffocating what small sense of security we had left.

For the women you know and love, vote for Hillary Clinton. For the generation that's on its way, vote for Hillary Clinton. There are elections to come where your protest vote may actually be an effective form of protest - and when that time comes, more power to you. But this is not one of those elections. No one will notice Gary Johnson's loss, they will only see Donald Trump's win. And the women you know will suddenly be in very extreme and immediate danger.

Women are in a unique and beautiful position to - for the first time in history - take control of our country. So let's do it. If you are a woman, if you care about the lives of women, if you love women, please use your vote strategically. Please help us defeat Trump.

And please read this article. It matters.