Four years ago we watched the inauguration of Donald Trump in the studio at our (then) new office. I remember waking up feeling a black sort of horror, and taking my kids to watch the moment, because I wanted to be with other people. There was an impending sense of dread, wondering what awful things might await us in the next few years. I was a pessimist, but if you’d told me that today we’d have 400,000 Americans dead from a largely unchecked pandemic, that our Capitol had been stormed by white supremacists, and our country would be in near economic collapse (just to mention a few things that have happened in the past four years) even I would have looked at you in disbelief.
Today at 9am PST, Joe Biden and Kamala Harris become our President and Vice President. They were my dream ticket, and today they step up to lead the country with empathy and knowledge. This morning should be full of celebration and relief. But instead, my muscles are in knots, worrying about what terror attacks might happen today, and where our country is going.
And yet. Last night as Yolanda Adams sang Hallelujah at our first public memorial for the victims of COVID, I felt a tiny bit of hope. Not the overwhelming hope and change of 2008, but a flicker in the darkness. This week we’ve been teaching our children—who we are suddenly homeschooling thanks to COVID—about the American system of government… hoping that the values of democracy and the fight for justice are passed on to another generation.
I don’t know what I will feel today. Probably a mixture of hope and grief and darkness and light. But we’re still here, we’re still fighting, and I hope that will be enough.
Today we’re leaving you with an open thread. Talk it out. You’re not alone.