On Chances

[Content Note: Bigotry; sexual assault.]

I am about at my wits' end with the idea that I should give the president-elect a chance. "See what happens." I am seeing what is happening already. I don't need to see any more.

He didn't earn any chances with his despicable campaign, and he sure as shit isn't earning any now.

And he doesn't need me to give him a chance, when virtually every powerbroker in politics and media is giving him endless chances.

I am incandescently angry just contemplating the number of chances he's already gotten. No matter how many times he shows himself to be an unapologetic bigot and aspiring despot, he gets another chance, accompanied by inexplicable extensions of good faith, to prove he is not the cruel person he demonstrates that he is and confesses to be.

I think of the countless young Black victims of police or vigilante violence whose entire lives and selves are reductively defined to a single photo posted on social media or a single bad act. I think of the countless women who have survived acts of sexual violence and are reductively defined to what they were wearing or something they texted once. I think of the countless children of immigrant parents whose entire futures and safety are reductively defined to whether their parents have a piece of paper.

So many people, people who are victims, who aren't given more than one chance. Whose lives are boiled down to one moment, one choice, one circumstance. One thing, ripped from its context and stripped of any nuance, used to define them forever.

While the president-elect, a man of unlimited privilege, gets chance after chance after chance, to prove that he is not exactly who he is revoltingly proud to be.

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