Dusting Off

November 22, 2016
It's been a rough two weeks. I spent the five days before Election Day with 15 other Baltimoreans climbing the hills of Pittsburgh, knocking on doors and urging residents to vote for Hillary Clinton. While there were certainly hints along the way, and I'd considered the possibility, I really didn't think Donald Trump would be elected as President of the United States. I was wrong. 
Much has been written about how/where we went wrong -- about the rural-urban divide, the shortcomings of the Clinton campaign, how the polls got it wrong, the role of the press, Jim Comey, Wikileaks, etc. There are some interesting articles, a bit off the beaten path, here and here (warning - colorful language used) and here that may be of interest. We will have many months to do some deep soul-searching as a Democratic party, but there is one aspect of this election that has me profoundly sad and disappointed:  while they may not agree with Donald Trump, millions of people are so frustrated with the way things are that they were willing to vote for someone who regularly demeaned, mocked and denigrated women, immigrants, the disabled, the electoral process and more. 
I am concerned about Donald Trump's staff and cabinet appointments as well as his policy proclamations and believe we need to be prepared to work with him when we agree and to voice our opposition when we disagree. I am concerned about the hate that has been unleashed from this campaign. If you have not seen this video of white supremicists meeting in Washington, DC this past weekend, it is only one example of what may become normalized. Hate crimes are on the rise and there is real, deep fear among many in our community. While I am reassured by our peaceful transition of power and the protections afforded by our Constitution, I believe that we all need to be vigilant. 
Many, many people have reached out to me, saddened, frustrated and disappointed with the results of the election -- and they want to do something. As a way to move forward, I believe we need to come together to try to make sense of the election. In Howard County last week, leaders of the Clinton campaign came together under the banner of #DoTheMostGood.  On Tuesday night, November 29th, from 7:00 - 9:00 pm at the Greene Turtle, 408 York Rd, please join me for a Baltimore area #DoTheMostGood meeting. This is an opportunity for all who are concerned about our future and the direction we've taken to come together in the aftermath of the election, for fellowship and discussion while we consider a path forward. Hillary Clinton's mantra has been, "Do all the good that you can, for as many people as you can, for as long as you can." #DoTheMostGood is a vehicle to harness this energy and connect people with one another in support of local efforts and organizations. It's also an organizing tool to engage folks on the local, state, and national levels. If the first 2 weeks are any indication, the new Trump Administration will need to be held accountable. 
Although I continue to be sad about Hillary's loss, I'm ready to dust myself off and get to work. I hope you can join me. In the meantime, from my family to yours, I hope you have a wonderful, peaceful and meaningful Thanksgiving!



Shelly Hettleman
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