By Jon Cogburn
After Trump gaslighted all of the women who had the courage to go public with his history of abuse, lots of other men publicly piled on by saying that no woman had ever told *them* about being sexually assaulted. This was part of the narrative that the women who went public were untrustworthy. I forget who responded to such a man by saying all that is proven by no woman telling you about being assaulted is that women don't trust you.
Some of my facebook friends are pretty upset about the election of an unstable, clinically narcissistic, racist, sexual predator to the U.S. Presidency. And some of my facebook friends are telling us we are overreacting and need to calm down.
I realize that this is well meant. But it's also unintentionally insulting. Note that as far as I can tell it is only white, straight, non-Jewish, non-disabled, non-Muslim, non-immigrant, economically secure facebook friends who are telling the rest of us to calm down. This is significant. I'm sorry, but it is.
Please just talk with someone freaked out about losing their health insurance if or when Obamacare is cancelled. Talk to some first generation immigrants or people who are related to first generation immigrants who are vastly more likely to be deported now. Talk to Jewish and Muslim people experiencing public harassment by Trump supporters. Talk to academics who are receiving violent hate mail (often threatening rape and murder) by Trump supporters. Talk to some people of color about why they are so upset and try to put yourself in their shoes.
I understand the desire to comfort people, but certain attempts at comforting end up being a form of gaslighting, saying that the upset people are being unreasonable. And if you think that LGBT people, immigrants, Muslims, Jews, and people of color upset about this election are being unreasonable this means either you haven't listened to them or they don't trust you.
I'm sorry, but it does.