Listen, if you're thinking about moving to Canada after Donald Trump's victory in the presidential election on Nov. 8, you are far from alone. We all joked about it when Trump first entered the race, but none of us truly believed that it would come to this. That being said, as appealing as it is to pack up the car and head for the border right now, you shouldn't move to Canada because of Trump's victory — or any other country, for that matter.
I know, I know. That's not what you want to hear right now, when your escape fantasies might very well just be the only thing keeping your last shred of sanity in tact. And if that is the case, that's OK. If staying in this country under Trump as president is really and truly going to affect your mental health and wellbeing, I am not going to attempt to convince you to stay; at the end of the day, only you know what is best for you, and I am just a stranger on the internet you've never met.
But if you are leaving the country out of sheer spite — because you are angry, because you want to "stick it" to Trump — then please hear me out: your best chance at making Donald Trump's presidency as miserable and unsuccessful as possible is to stay right where you are.
If you really and truly believed in a country that isn't represented by a sexist, xenophobic, ignorant man the way it will become this January, then stay in it. Stay here, and fight for the very same rights that are now threatened more than they ever have been in modern America. You know which rights I'm talking about — they're the same ones that Trump has vowed to overturn all throughout this election cycle. Trump wants to limit access to abortions. Trump wants to put a blanket ban on Muslims entering the country. Trump opposes marriage equality. Trump is so casually racist and overtly sexist that he would be frightening to hold a conversation with as a citizen, let alone imagine him taking the world stage; and that is exactly what he is about to do, bigly. All of the awful things he has been promising have the potential to become a reality very, very soon.
And so I pose this important question to anybody trying to leave: Who is going to make that difficult for Trump, if all of the self-respecting Americans are gone? Who is going to make it hard for him if, when he attempts to pass racist, homophobic, sexist policies, there is nobody left to push back?
Before you go, please consider this: you live in a nation that still has the potential to be a great nation. A nation that was founded on freedom, and hope, and happiness.
It might not feel like it tonight, but your vote and your voice still matter. For these next four years, they matter more than ever. I know you're tired. I know you're upset. I know you're looking into moving to Canada, because their immigration site crashed a few minutes after Trump won Florida and shit got real. I'm not going to make this sound any less terrible than it is, because it is hard for me to even type this right now — like a lot of Americans, I am typing this through tears. This is a waking nightmare. I'm sorry that you are reading this right now; I truly, truly am.
But before you go, please consider this: you live in a nation that still has the potential to be a great nation. A nation that was founded on freedom, and hope, and happiness. There are good people here. But more importantly, there are good, marginalized people here. There are people here who need protecting from Trump, who don't get to leave; there are people who still want to be here, and are trapped someplace much worse. If you can play even the smallest role in advocating for those people by staying, and you think you have the ability to stick it out until we have a chance to undo what has been done tonight, then please reconsider before you go.
Take a breath, America. Get some sleep. We've got a long road ahead of us, and as much as it hurts to hear right now, this one truth remains: we are always, always stronger together.