I wrote this immediately after the final debate ended and don’t feel like going back and changing all the tenses and such to make it seem as if I wrote it today. I am guilty of a fairly strong sense of indignation while writing this, so forgive me. Here we go!
I grew up with a single mother who has not yet remarried. That’s not a statement I’m making to qualify my reason for finding the misogynistic behavior of Donald Trump appalling. I bring it up because it allowed me an atypical upbringing.
I didn’t know how prevalent sexism was until the last year because in my world there was no substantive difference between men and women. I’ve seen a woman do things people told her she needed a man to help with, even if that “man” was her own child. As if somehow my chromosomes dictated my superior ability to accomplish a task instead of her past experience. Her “temperament” somehow supposing she needs a man to help her discipline a household or make decisions because, I’m assuming, her emotional acuity is some weakness that allows her to express herself more clearly and effectively than those with less of an emotional intelligence.
Those things aren’t even examples I cherry picked for this point. They’re the two things I cherish most about the person my mother taught me to be. Being raised by someone who is constantly being told she shouldn’t be doing something on her own seems like it could be depressing, but it’s one of the very few things in life that continuously gives me hope. In dealing with a lifetime struggle with depression and anxiety, I’ve always had the picture perfect example of how to stand up to the voices telling you that you aren’t suited for your life.
There’s a laundry list of ways I don’t feel I fit into the typically accepted societal checklist for the gender tag of “male.” My peers and context taught me to be ashamed of that reality. However, my mother taught me otherwise; and, as much flak as she gives herself, she’s raised someone who doesn’t feel emasculated by strong, intelligent women; someone who strives to view the world with the same emotional intelligence as I saw exemplified for the majority of my upbringing.
Mom, you’re the reason I have to vote for Hillary. I’ve watched all three debates between her and the orange fiasco-of-a-Homosapien Sapien and I couldn’t help but think back to all the times I heard men ask you “how you could manage such a big job on your own.” His treatment towards her was a condensed version of the same condescension I’ve watched you shrug off for 14 years while giving more of yourself to others than most could ever dream of. What I saw in her on that stage tonight and the two times previously I’ve seen in you for the majority of my life, so how could I not have faith in her ability to excel as our President.