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Voting, We Are All Immigrants

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Not to get all Freudian, but last night I woke gasping for breath (repeatedly), paralyzed with fear, riding waves of Donald Trump smothering me. The nightmare stapled me to the bed. (And, I know if he read this, he'd say I wasn't even close to being good-looking enough for him to nightmare me.)

Women cite stomachaches, inability to work, leaden feelings in their limbs, sleeplessness, and depression. Many men, including my husband, are as upset-but they move into anger quicker, while we fight feelings of being smothered and are traumatized from past sexual assaults as we hear his assaultive words against women.

I work hard at separating my writing life and political views. I write novels. Stories. Not polemic. But, having grown up with stories of the Holocaust, with family who left Germany and Romania because of politics, I know that there are times when art and life collide. We are all children of immigrants in this country and protecting each other comes first.

We've woken to people becoming numb to a candidate mimicking a disabled reporter, inciting violence against his opponent, claiming women should be punished for having abortions, calling Mexicans rapists, partnering with talks about being attracted to his daughter NPR, admiring despots and encouraging nuclear proliferation, refusing housing to African-Americans, wanting a national stop and frisk, filing for bankruptcy multiple times.

Someone who called climate change a Chinese hoax. Someone who will tank your parent's -- your -- retirement. Threaten social security. Upend the tax system to ensure the wealthiest in our country are given the highest tax breaks.

The list goes on and on.

We've woken to the possibility that some discount the clear and present danger in our country. They are willing to vote for perennial fringe candidates. That vote may enable a man with hate in his heart to head our country.

We are not so far removed from a past that includes slavery, the Holocaust, Rwanda, Armenia and so many more nightmares. Syria is suffering the horror right now.

If we do not learn from the past, we are doomed to repeat it.

Each man and woman in this country is entitled to vote in the manner they deem best. All I humbly ask is that every American look into their heart and weighs the ultimate good for all our neighbors.

Let us not condemn our country, but lift it up to embrace all.