"I was in the parking lot at the grocery store yesterday, wearing my Hillary t-shirt in preparation for a debate party, and a woman ran across the parking lot to stop and thank me. Her words: 'Thank you so much for wearing that shirt. It makes me feel like it's okay for me to say what I really think. I LOVE Hillary--she is not the lesser of two evils and I've admired her dedication to public service for years.'" -- Kirstin Larson
Women. It's okay to shout your support from the rooftops now.
Polls have long shown incredibly high support and enthusiasm for Hillary with women and mom voters; and tens of thousands of people are volunteering for Hillary's campaign across the nation each day. But Donald Trump, who has called women "disgusting animals," "fat pigs," "slobs," "dogs" and other disrespectful and hurtful epithets, has set a tone of violence, sexism, and bullying throughout this campaign that's been spreading out in our communities, online, to our children, and into how we treat, share, and talk with each other.
This bullying led by Trump is bad. It hurts our communities. It hurts our public discourse. It hurts our democracy. In fact, many women strongly support Hillary, and plan to vote for her, but just haven't felt safe saying so or showing up in public yet--and some for good reason:
"I've been totally harassed and threatened for supporting Hillary Clinton. I received threats to: Myself, my family, insults about my daughter, and specific threats to my business. It was scary, debilitating, and I had to fight within myself daily to not back down--because to back down was to let myself be silenced and bullied and that I will never do." - Laura Dawn
On Monday night a national silence was lifted. The entire tone of the election changed. Did you hear it?
That was the sound of millions of women and men cheering Hillary on as she outmaneuvered Trump -- even as he interrupted, body shamed, and talked over her in condescending ways. Over 80 million viewers watched a less qualified man interrupt and talk over a more-qualified woman, without any regard to the length or quality of his comments. During the debate at Hofstra University, Trump exhibited the sexist behavior that challenges women everyday, everywhere in our nation.
We saw it. We heard it. She destroyed him anyway. We cheered.
In the wake of that destruction, Hillary freed other women to come together, to step forward, and to call out the sexism that has pervaded many women's experiences as Hillary supporters in this campaign. The change was nearly instantaneous. In Kirkland, WA where over 400 people turned out to watch Hillary debate, filling the venue to capacity with many publicly cheering Hillary on for the first time, murmurs of, "It's so good to be able to finally be out in public supporting Hillary," and, "From now until the election I'm going to wear my Hillary t-shirt everyday," rippled through the crowd.
It was a sweet release for many from the confines of keeping closed lips about support for fear of backlash, a veritable love festival:
- "I love Hillary because she's smart as hell and will work hard." - Dr. Jennifer Stone
- "I love Hillary because she's strong, thoughtful, prepared, inclusive, persistent--All things I admire in a leader." - Suzanne McGill
- "I love Hillary because she wants to co-author, not dictate." - Justina Chen
Hillary is winning and as she does it she's bringing all of us to the table--and she's putting critically important policies that are too often overlooked and which lift our economy and our families front and center on the national agenda where they belong.
Hillary's leading the way, showing, that in addition to shouting your support for her from the rooftops:
It's okay to shout from the rooftops for equal pay. The new numbers on the pay gap that just came out this month from the U.S. Census show women earn only 80 cents to a man's dollar, with moms and women of color experiencing bigger wage hits. Hillary not only has fought for fair pay, she opened the debate underscoring the importance of this policy area and has moved the ball forward throughout her career. As a U.S. Senator, she was a lead sponsor of the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Restoration Act, which was signed into law in 2009, and the lead sponsor of the Paycheck Fairness Act, which would stop retaliation against employees who discuss their pay levels. Advancing equal pay not only lifts women, it lifts our economy: Studies show that our GDP would rise at least 3% with pay parity. Not surprisingly, Trump falls short in this policy area, ignoring it during the debate all together and having said that "putting a wife to work is a very dangerous thing," and writing that female employees merely "perceived the glass ceiling looming overhead."
It's okay to shout your support from the rooftops for paid family and medical leave. The U.S. is the only industrialized nation without this critical policy in place. Its absence is hurting our global competitiveness, families, businesses and economy. Here too Hillary raised this important policy at the beginning of the debate and she's also stepped up with a comprehensive plan that covers all parents in a way that raises all families, businesses, and our economy. Trump, on the other hand, tried recently to take over the high polling issue with a faulty proposal that not only provides no new funding to run the program, but is limited to only new birth mothers, which could reinforce the wage gap since dads are caregivers too.
It's okay to shout your support from the rooftops for real, affordable childcare. Childcare now costs more than college. It's a national emergency. Hillary not only opened the debate with a statement in support of addressing the child care crisis, she's also stepped up to address it with a comprehensive proposal to revamp childcare so it works for everyone. Trump, following Hillary's lead, recently tried to take over the popular issue and gaslight Hillary, lying about where she stands. His faulty proposal for child care would force families, whose budgets are already breaking from the high cost of care, to pay costs upfront. In short, Mr. Trump's plan does nothing to make childcare affordable. Hillary's plan, which she's had on her website for months, moves our nation forward.
It's okay to shout your support from the rooftops for #BlackLivesMatter. Black people are three times more likely than White people to be killed when they encounter the police in the US, and Black teenagers are 21 times likelier to be killed by police than White teenagers. Enough is enough. Here during the debate Hillary spoke to the need for criminal justice reform, to make sure everyone is respected by the law, and to make sure that our police are using the best training and best techniques. Trump, on the other hand, promoted the incredibly damaging stop-and-frisk policy during the debate, which has been declared unconstitutional because it targets Black and Brown communities. Trump's proposal to scale up and double-down on the already horrendous racial profiling in the criminal justice system through stop-and-frisk will continue to fuel mass incarceration, cost our economy billions, and further marginalize many Americans.
It's okay to shout from the rooftops for gun safety. Every day, an average of 289 people are shot and 33 people are killed with guns. During the debate, Hillary -- in addition to calling for comprehensive background checks on gun sales and checking the proliferation of military-style weapons for civilian use -- spoke about the importance of improving the relationship between law enforcement and the community, and called for new "common-sense" gun laws to stop the "leading cause of death for African American men." Donald Trump, in contrast, simply touted his endorsement by the NRA and advocated for the expansion of policing methods like stop-and-frisk that target and abuse Black and Brown men and women. It should be noted that here too Donald Trump has repeatedly lied about where Hillary stands: Hillary has never, ever said she wants to abolish the 2nd amendment.
Whether it's the fight for equal pay, paid family and medical leave, affordable child care, racial justice, or a push to expand gun safety - Hillary's campaign is breaking barriers at every level. She's shouting from the rooftops for policies that have been too long ignored but are critical to the success of our businesses, families and economy to be center stage.
With her hands down win of the debate the time is now for us all to now shout our support for Hillary from the rooftops too. Let's show some #HillaryLove!