It Was The Worst Of Times, It Was The Best Of Times, It Was A Time For Resistance

11/11/2016 11:11 am ET Updated Nov 12, 2017

It was a day of despair, it was a day of anger.

It was a day of tragedy, it was a day of devotion.

It was a day of remembrance, it was a day of resistance.

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I wake on November 9, like so many others, to shock. My heart throbs. My body trembles. My thoughts are a daze.

I feel much like everyone else. Recent years had seen unprecedented victory for our community. Far beyond marriage equality, momentum was ours around transgender rights and the protections for LGBTQ+ youth, access to healthcare, assistance for some of the most marginalized in our communities.

I struggle with my own reactions and my need to comprehend how such a thing could happen: polls, media coverage, and everything else distinctly indicated a win for progress. Even former Presidents had made a clear stand for moral and ethical principles that overrode party affiliation. Apparently there is more bigotry in our country than even my pessimistic side had considered. I feel an intense disgust.

As an activist, I feel a profound resentment. Improvement seemed almost a daily occurrence; it is difficult to acknowledge that all the effort I and my peers have done to educate and create change has yet to yield the change so desperately needed. The decades of struggle, the countless hours in writing, public speaking, organizing, all in an attempt to reshape our society toward one of inclusion and respect for the basic rights of each of us as human beings has not yielded the progress we'd hoped.

And as a community leader, I rededicate myself to the ongoing conflict and ask everyone to do the same. Though the backlash is more vehement than we expected, we remain a force that must be reckoned with. I urge us to transform our disbelief into rage, our frustration into defiance, and our agony into resistance.

Every one of us, as we stand, demonstrate our pride, and work toward that goal of a society of inclusion, is a role model. We are role models that we WILL find means to meet our own needs, that as much as we have been a community under siege for as long as any of us can recall, we WILL continue to show up for the fight.

Anything more I write will be lost in the cacophony of cries we all hear echoed from so many.

And so I offer these words of wisdom [capitalization mine]:

  • We Shall Overcome. - Anonymous

  • The Personal IS Political. - Carol Hanisch
  • The likelihood that your acts of resistance cannot stop the injustice does not exempt you from acting in what you sincerely and reflectively hold to be the best interests of your community. ― Susan Sontag
  • We must learn that passively to accept an unjust system is to cooperate with that system, and thereby to become a participant in its evil. ― Martin Luther King Jr.
  • Be The Change You Wish To See In The World. - Ghandi
  • We Will Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night. - Dylan Thomas
  • What has it meant that hope has been so long denied?... If there's a biologically definable will to live, it probably requires hope to sustain itself. - Michael Callen
  • We have to go into the despair and go beyond it... by using it for something else. - Elie Wiesel
  • When I use my strength in the service of my vision it makes no difference whether or not I am afraid. - Audre Lorde
  • We Are Here, We Are Queer, Get Used to It.