Letter: Reflections after the presidential election

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Published Nov. 13, 2016

Dear brothers and sisters:

After the surprising election results of this week, I am sad and worry for all the many vulnerable citizens among us such as undocumented workers, the homeless, the poor, young people of color,  Muslim Americans,  LGTBQ citizens and those who live with disabilities who may be more persecuted than ever.    

I would also like to thank Hillary Clinton for such an inspiring speech on Wednesday. As always, former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton taught us subtle and invaluable lessons. It is fairly easy to give a speech when you are victorious.   It is extremely difficult to give one in defeat and expose yourself at your most vulnerable moment.

Hillary showed exquisite grace, compassion for herself in defeat and love for all Americans.  Her consistent service to families and children and her unwavering commitment to the values of social justice and economic equality for all are precious gifts to this nation and the world.

I wanted Hillary to talk to little girls and she did much more than what I wished for.  She spoke to little girls and boys with tenderness and respect. With her calm and dignified presence, we were uplifted and embraced.  Following her lead, let’s reach out to one another as we face one of the most difficult times in this nation’s history and the world. Namaste!

“When we strive to become better than we are, everything around us becomes better, too. … When we love, we always strive to become better than we are.” (Paulo Coelho, “The Alchemist”)

Editor’s note: Dr. Maria del Carmen Rodriguez is an assistant professor of counseling at Kean University’s Nathan Weiss Graduate College.

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