Break the silence

Editor of the Reformer:

Today my heart cracked open when speaking to an African American friend. We had exchanged our usual greetings when he stopped, looked at me closely and whispered, "Are you afraid?"

All of a sudden I could say what I haven't been able to speak outside my own family. "Trump, you mean, are we going to elect Trump? " He nodded in agreement. I found myself grabbing at my heart. "I don't know, I don't know. All I know is how my guts are twisting. This has been the most horrible campaign ever."

His speaking broke the silence for me and allows me to say what I haven't been able to say. This is a critical election. Why aren't we speaking with each other? Where are the signs? Why aren't people willing to put Trump or Hillary on their lawns?

So here is my sign. I am for Hillary Clinton. I oppose Donald Trump. I know I am afraid of my progressive neighbors shaking their fingers at me and explaining that she is not perfect and that they will never vote for her. I am so afraid to hear this that I have silenced myself.

I am 68 years old, and I cannot stand what looks to me like a deep vein of misogyny in our country. Is it harder to elect a woman than an African American man in our country? Is this what I am afraid to admit?

This is a critical election. Yet now we are silent, terrified of stepping on one each other's toes. Is this true? We must speak up now. The election has started. Speak to your neighbors. Get out the vote. Vote responsibly.


Julie Forsythe, Putney, Sept. 25