By Valerie Bustamante
On Election Night I sat in my bed anxiously and waited, watching my TV as the polls came in. “Ping.” Another state came in. “Ping.” There went another one. “Ping.”
I watched as the red slowly went up on the counter that was displayed at the corner of the TV. I couldn’t believe it.
So I turned it off and laid in my bed thinking of what was to happen if Donald Trump actually won this whole election he’s turned into a mockery.
I tried to close my eyes, but my mind was still thinking. Throughout the night I was dozing off and waking up constantly, checking my phone for the electoral numbers. This continued for the rest of the night until 3 a.m. when I saw what read, “Donald Trump wins Presidency.”
My mind went blank. I couldn’t believe it. It had actually happened. My eyes watered up and I dropped my phone beside me, and laid in darkness. I cried and cried.
Our country had just taken a step back and voted for someone who has no political experience to take on one of the most important roles ever.
Someone who believes women should not have the rights to their own bodies. Someone who believes immigrants should not be allowed to live in our melting-pot country, when all they want to do is come here for a new start.
In fact they take on jobs that most people in this country wouldn’t be able to handle for an hour, but they do it because it’s one step closer to a better life.
Yes, I respect anybody’s political views. However, I’m still upset, saddened and most importantly disappointed there are still some people who are so close-minded about this. It’s 2016 and to know people want someone who makes racist remarks to other cultures, and is determined to build a wall along the place I call home is sad.
However, while we can’t turn back from what happened, we can move forward.
To my fellow Cardinals, friends, family and Americans, no matter what happens these next four years it’s up to us to stay strong and unite.
Don’t turn away from each other or from our country.
Instead let’s stand tall beside each other and be proud of who we are, what makes us different and what we believe is right.
No matter if you’re LBGTQ, Muslim, Latino, a woman, or person of color. Just know you are valued and don’t let anybody tell you otherwise.
We live in a country that was built on the idea of freedom and nobody should have to live in fear.
Together we will move forward and conquer whatever is to happen. We need to push through the hate and the ignorance.
Let’s continue our jobs as citizens and remember love will always be stronger.
I will stand tall and proud as a Latina, as a woman, and as a journalist for my future because I’m not going to let someone tear me down for who I am.