On November 9, 2016, America held its breath, watching the numbers roll in, and blue fade into red. I had an essay on the topic of patriotism due the next day for my English class. Rattled with anxiety and out of my medication, I couldn’t concentrate, flipping back and forth between live coverage and my pathetic essay. I spent more time releasing my feelings into a terrifying poem than actually working on that essay (but boy was it bitter when I finished). I went to bed horrified, anxious and empty inside.
This was a dark time for me. I was living with the white side of my family, and I was the only person minority in the house… on multiple accounts. My grandmother voted for Trump, and this put a definite wedge in our relationship as I realized that she was not invested in my rights. I had to deal with it because I lived with her.
I went to school the next day dejected and bitter. I lived in rural North Carolina and attended a majority white school of about 600 and I was miserable. When news of the hate crimes started rolling in, it brought my situation to a whole other level of realness. I checked in with my minority friends around the state and we lamented together.
When word of the protests reached me, I started to feel slightly better knowing that that was the game plan. We were going to fight for our rights and for each other’s rights. We were going to demand them. I, of course, was unable to protest, as a 15-year-old living in the middle of nowhere with no money and no ride.
Instead, I took up arms in the way I knew how. I was going to start the project I am sharing today. So I got on Twitter, and I found all the videos I could find of protests going on around the country, ending up with hundreds. Hundreds of chronicles of Americans fighting a system that produced such a horrible president, fighting for their vote to count, and even fighting for their lives. I sorted them by city, roughly by time, and noted the source I received the clips from.
In the chaos of my life in the next few months, (and my laptop charger breaking) my project took a back seat. In this past week, I’ve been working constantly, and from this productivity streak came an invigorated passion for this project. After a few days of work, I’ve edited together this tribute to the #NotMyPresident rallies. I hope this testament will leave you with an invigorated passion to stand up and fight the horror and the injustice happening here in our streets today.
I plan to continue creating and editing films under my new project, Art for Resistance.