4 BCC Students Reflect on What This Election Means to Them
By Sabrina Sellers
(Above) Illustration Credit: Remy Carreiro
In one of the biggest upsets in political history, Donald Trump was elected President of the United States, on November 8, 2016. The win was victorious for those who supported him, but devastating for those who disagreed with his fear-mongering campaign fraught with xenophobia, racism, misogyny, and pure bigotry. The win has been internalized by the BCC community in the past few weeks, and in their own words, 4 students share their fears, motivations, and hopes for their futures and the futures of their communities.
“I’m fearful of families being deported and separated even though millions of undocumented immigrants have been living in the US for years, working so hard and paying taxes, and raising their US citizen kids.” —Undocumented Student
“On one hand, as a Mexican/Indigenous mixed person that is apart of the LGBTQ community, I have faced prejudice and violence in many respects for simply existing while on the other hand, I have particular privileges that allow me to be political and vocal while others may not be safe doing so or be heard. Being situated at this point in the socio-political sphere allows me to see this as an opportunity for change while others may be paralyzed with fear or feel there is nothing they can do. Both are valid feelings in the face of what may come.” —Jack Garza
“For myself, I fear losing access to physical and mental health care. I fear myself coming to a place where my discomfort with being mistaken for a cisgender woman might one day outweigh my ambivalence about identity. I fear fully coming out. I fear violence as a female-bodied person, and as a queer individual.”—Kenzie Donovan
“I think I fear not being able to do enough to help. My community has a lot of damage and requires a person who genuinely wants to help it. Not being able to or forgetting why I want to [help] my people would destroy me.” —Cameron “Dizz” McGowan
“I’m deeply motivated to turn my attention to [Trump’s] support base, listen to their reasonings, and appeal to them directly and personally (and even offline!) to recognize the humanity of the people harmed by their votes. I’m motivated to reach out more, and openly defend at all costs. I’m motivated to actively listen to people of color. I’m motivated to work towards coalitions of solidarity.” —Kenzie Donovan
“This feeling created a sense of urgency as far as getting my career in line in order to disseminate info to as many folks as possible. I am still going strong off of this feeling.” —Cameron “Dizz” McGowan
“I hope that families are going to be together and not separated by political interest. There’s a Nahuatl saying, ‘They tried to bury us, but they didn’t know that we were seeds.’ We are a resilient community, and we are here to stay no matter what happens. We’re a hardworking community and we have survived other administrations. So, for me, my most rebellious act is to continue being a good Latinx student and transfer to a 4-year university and give voice to my community. Education is power and I am hopeful that more Latinxs are transferring and getting a degree. Aquí estamos y no nos vamos! We’re here to stay and we are not leaving anytime soon. ” —Undocumented Student
“What is important to remember, I think, is that there are so many of us. Yes, there are those that do not care for us or our causes, and there are those that fundamentally despise us. If we keep in mind the magnitude of response and solidarity that came from so many different communities and groups, we can hold on to the fact that we are not alone.” —Jack Garza
“I hope intersectionality fuels the movements that are to come. I hope white liberals own up to our part in this result, and the work we have cut out for us. I hope we actually walk the talk this time and mobilize to eradicate white supremacy ourselves, without relying on people of color to do the heavy lifting for us. But there’s a difference between hoping for something, and being hopeful about it.” —Kenzie Donovan
“I have been and will continue to hold hope for my community. Black people have lit fires for others since the beginning of recorded history. These fires have been passed to us. With that being said I am concerned for my people, but I am not worried; for I know that my people are resilient and shall overcome. Kendrick Lamar said it way better than I ever could. ‘We gon’ be alright.'” —Cameron “Dizz” McGowan
Kenzie Donovan is President of the Sociology Club and frenemies with Facebook.
Jack Garza is a researcher, writer, and community activist.
Cameron “Dizz” McGowan is President of the Black Student Union.
Undocumented Student has asked for their name to be redacted.