As I have no doubt that many of you are still hurting and contending with the emotional fallout / pain from last night’s election, I wanted to share a few thoughts with you.
Below is a letter that I didn’t author, but whose sentiments I affirm 100%, not only as your instructor but as a person who cares deeply for your well-being and mental / emotional health.
Last night Donald Trump was elected the 45th president of the United States. Even as you’ve been hurt and made to feel unsafe by his racist, misogynistic, and xenophobic actions, I want you to know that I’m committed to making our classroom as safe of a space as it can be. You should feel respected and heard whenever you are here.
To my students who are Latinx: Your family’s history and culture will not be judged, vilified, or rejected in this classroom. Speech that discriminates against you, or anyone else, has not, and will never be, acceptable in my classroom.
To my students who are women: In this classroom, you 100% have the right to be treated as a person, not an object. You have the right for your voice to be heard and trusted.
To my students with bodies: In this classroom, your bodies are yours—they are unique and personal to you. Do not let anyone tell you otherwise.
To my students with disabilities: In this classroom, you will not be mocked or judged for who you are. Your dignity and multiple identities, disability included, are important and appreciated.
To my students who are immigrants: This country was built upon a nation of immigrants, and we will continue to appreciate and be proud of the work we put into it together. No one will move to shame you without first dealing with me and officials at our university.
To my students who are Muslim-American: Your religion, families and your personhood are valued in this classroom. In this classroom, you have the right to express your views, identify with, and be proud of your religious experience regardless of where you come from.
To my students who are black: Your lives do matter, and you deserve the same constitutional rights that everyone else in this country enjoys. In this classroom, those rights will absolutely be recognized and respected. #blacklivesmatter
To my students who identify as lesbian, gay, queer, bi, or trans: No one in this classroom will discriminate against you based upon your gender expression or sexual orientation. You have the right to use the bathrooms that ascribe to your gender identity and love who you want to love.
To all of my students: Your diverse opinions, identities, and backgrounds are the backbone of what makes our community great. When you are within these walls, I will do everything in our power to keep you safe, make sure you are respected, and that your voice is valued. If ever you feel otherwise, please reach out to me or someone else at the university.
My job is to keep you safe and critically informed. And I will continue to perform this duty to the best of my abilities so that, long after you have left these walls, your knowledge and diversity can continue to shape our spaces into more inclusive and just communities.
Resources (local and otherwise):
**Update: On-campus resources for today (11.10)
Per the university’s LGBT resource center, here are some local campus resources and safe spaces where you can find other students looking to process their feelings about yesterday’s election.
If you’re looking for a safe space to build community and support, the Asian Pacific American Coalition (APAC) will be hosting solidarity hours tomorrow, 11/10, from 5.00p-9.00p at 1210 W. Nevada St. in the conference room. There’ll be a facilitated dialogue at 7.00p re: processing last night’s events.
And finally, if you’d like to speak with someone immediately about coping with emotional trauma from election night—anxiety, depression, suicidal thoughts, and/or mental health issues—call the Samaritans 24-Hour Crisis Hotline at (212) 673-3000 or text the Crisis Text Line at 741-741. I pulled those resources from this link.
Last (and most certainly least)—Twine Extension
Just to reiterate the word (and I recently sent this information to you all via e-mail), I’m extending the Twine project to next Tuesday. See below for the full text / rationale or check your inboxes.If the past 24 hours for you all have been anything like it’s been for me, then it’s probably been terrifying, upsetting, infuriating, heartbreaking, and emotionally exhausting. I know I’m struggling to get my own stuff done, and I imagine that for many of you, it’s been difficult as well.As such, I’m extending the deadline for the Twine Project (game + rationale) to next Tuesday, 11.15 at 9.30a. We’ll still have class like normal tomorrow, playing each other’s games and such, but final projects won’t be due until next week.Also, if you feel as if your emotional and mental health would best be served by doing your own thing instead of attending tomorrow’s class, please feel free to do so. There’ll be no judgment or grade penalty from me on that front.Take care of yourselves and each other. We need it now more than ever. ❤