By Kendra Moe

   The night of the election, my three roommates and I sat in our living room, our hearts beating and eyes glued to our phones. We checked the polls excessively, barely speaking, waiting and watching in horror as our worst nightmare became more and more real.

   Through false or grossly biased news outlets, it seemed that more of the country’s youth were deciding who to vote for based on their facebook newsfeed. Trump’s crude and discriminatory behavior towards women, the mentally ill, people of color, and religions other than Christianity, has sparked a resurrection of hate that eliminates the time and effort that went into some of the most powerful social justice movements in our history.

   Being in Oakland during the time of election made the fear of the future so much more real. Oakland is very diverse and social justice oriented, and the despair and rage is obvious in every despondent face I see. The night of the election, I was so sure that the future was female, that Trump’s campaign was too ridiculous to even consider, that I was utterly shocked and offended when the results were finalized. My roommates cried together, I wasn’t able to sleep. I could hear the riots already starting in the streets of Oakland, and I knew something had to be done. I have attended a few peaceful protests, but I know my place is not in the front lines. I’m hoping to express not only my pain and disenchantment but also my condolences for those who will suffer far more than I will. I hope to write as many angry or informative activist poems, articles, and stories I can. Words and ideas are powerful ways to fight back against the hate that’s engulfing our country.

Instilling fear in older generations

Permission to hate

to take a step back 50 years

America was never great,

from slavery to a trail of tears

Socioeconomic racism

feeding the gentrification

We’re trapped under the mercy

of a bigoted politician

Using dirty money under a veil

of patriotism and religion

Wanting to watch the world crumble

Reducing us into victims

of poverty and back alley abortions

Our people’s dreams crushed beneath

Paranoia, devastation, and mass deportations

America was never great

Under the chains of social slavery

A feared yet coveted nation

Our history built on genocide and colonization

Under a charade of freedom and bravery

Yet the people remain terrified

Of a woman in a pant suit

When families are forced to uproot

We ask: when did guns need more protection

Than human lives

More people with objection

To email archives than sexual assault

We care more about legalizing pot

Than protecting those the country forgot

Kendra Moe grew up in Salem and now studies at Mills College in Oakland.