I won't be the first to admit that the 2016 Election didn't go the way I wanted it to, and I certainly won't be the last, but what hurts more than waking up to a President-Elect that I most certainly didn't want to be anywhere near the Oval Office is seeing the hatred and concern in those around me.
On one hand, this could go down as one of the worst days in American History - not because we elected Donald Trump as our next President, but because of the violence and terror filling cities across the country. There are stories of those already involved in hate crimes and so many are discussing moments of fear as they face oppression. Now, I'm not usually one for politics, at least not in a public setting, but not even I can keep quiet this time. Our country is facing immense change, whether it be for better or worse. But maybe change is what we need. Maybe things need to be different, but in what way?
Whenever I'm feeling lost, I sort of settle in with my IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth soundtrack and think back to Epcot, partially because it's where I feel safest and most like myself, and partially because of the ideals that created it. Epcot is about experimenting and looking ahead, all while celebrating our heritage and history. Within its walls, there's a delicate balance between the past, present, and future, and when it all boils down, Epcot is about acceptance.
It's about recognizing and accepting our differences. It's about celebrating the qualities that make us unique and connecting through what we have in common, and what we don't. Epcot is about community, an element that is expressed best through the countries of World Showcase, filled with individual from all over the world, coming together as one, and it's not even just the cast members. Think of the table sharing tradition at the Biergarten. We can come from all over the country and world and sit down at the same table and share a meal like a family. That's special. That's what it's all about. That's what it should be about.
And at the end of the day, we return to World Showcase Lagoon to remind ourselves how we got here, and rejoice in the idea that, regardless of what happens, no matter who will step into the Oval Office in January, we go on. Now is the time for us to stand together and take on the future, hand in hand, perhaps more than ever, and retain the idea that we will get through it together. That may be easy for me to say, especially as a privileged member of society, but we've made it this far, through far worse trials than this, and I have faith that we will get through this. We have to believe that.
All this being said, I want to take a moment to share that if you need to talk, I am here to listen. If you feel unsafe, I am here to reassure and protect you. If you need help, I am here, and I will help you. If you feel oppressed, I am here, and I will fight for you. I will do whatever I can to be there for you, and that goes for everyone everyday, even after the next four years expire.
Hang tight America. We may be in for some bumpy seas, but I foresee the American Adventure to continue for a long, long time.
Have a magical day!