In her essay, Dunham describes the year and a half she spent campaigning for Clinton and what Donald Trump’s win means to so many minority groups in this country. Dunham’s letter serves as a somber yet encouraging reminder that although people need time to grieve, it is also the time to organize and fight back.
“In this new reality, we have all been radicalized,” Dunham wrote. “It’s no longer a word for those living on the fringes. It’s a word for everyone who walks in pain with the results of this election, who feels their identity being crushed under the weight of the half of the country who voted for a man who denounces and denies the basic rights of women, the queer community, immigrants, Muslims, people of color and the differently abled.”
During her time campaigning for Clinton, the “Girls” creator received more online vitriol and threats than she ever had before: Her phone was hacked, her Twitter mentions became violent and she was called horrific names.
“My experience mimics that of so many women who organized for Hillary Clinton and against Donald Trump, most of them not celebrities,” she wrote. “We wanted a female president. We wanted guaranteed control over our own bodies. We wanted equal pay. That made us nasty. That made us targets.”
It should not be the job of women, of people of color, of queer and trans Americans, to understand who does not consider them human and why, just as it’s not the job of the abused to understand their abuser. Lena Dunham
Dunham also spoke to other white woman, 53 percent of whom voted for Donald Trump.
“It’s painful to know that white women, so unable to see the unity of female identity, so unable to look past their violent privilege, and so inoculated with hate for themselves, showed up to the polls for him, too,” Dunham wrote.
She pointed out that right now is not the time to try to understand the mindset of Trump voters: “It should not be the job of women, of people of color, of queer and trans Americans, to understand who does not consider them human and why, just as it’s not the job of the abused to understand their abuser,” she wrote. “It’s quite enough work to know about and bear the hatred of so many. It’s quite enough work to go on living.”
Dunham wrapped up her essay by thanking Clinton:
Thank you, Hillary, for bravely taking every shot and standing tall, for weathering assaults from every direction... Thank you for showing our daughters something beautiful to aspire to. Thank you for reminding us what we are capable of when we are focused and ferocious. Thank you for 30 years of that. Thank you for not abandoning us now.
Head over to Lenny Letter to read the rest of Dunham’s essay.