Experiences

I don’t post political statements on social media anymore. I don’t post beliefs, but rather experiences.

I haven’t posted about my political experience since sharing that while voting for President Obama, I was harassed at the voting center by a man who told me that he could smell the evil on me and Mitt Romney would put me back in the kitchen where I belong.

This is not the place where I post about my beliefs, only my experiences. I am in no way trying to change your mind. I am simply sharing my life experiences.

As someone who went years struggling to find health insurance due to pre-existing conditions, I fear for my son who was a NICU baby with health issues. I remember the tears, frustration, and time dedicated to not having my issues covered. There was a time in my life when planned parenthood was the only location that would sell birth control to me because my health insurance decided that past urinary tract infections was reason to deny ALL gynecological issues. While in college, still covered by my parent’s insurance, I had a blood clot in my leg. It dissipated on its own, luckily. But when I changed insurance companies, guess what was no longer covered: anything blood related. Please remember that I have a genetic blood disorder. Something I have not control over since I have had it since before I was actually born; my DNA is “wrong”. Sorry ma’am, we will not cover any issues related to your blood, including services related to a blood clot. So, I was paying astronomical monthly insurance fees, but had no coverage for gynecological issues or hematology. Now when people threaten to annihilated “Obamacare”, I return to that time in my life when I felt ostracized for being born different. I understand that you don’t like the policy plan. But there are people like me who desperately need certain aspects of that plan. My son was a NICU baby, which means that 6-years ago, certain insurance companies could deny him complete coverage because his entire existence was considered a pre-existing condition. Just take a moment to think about that.

It is not that I don’t think we should have a different immigration process; it’s that health care is vital to our financial existence. I know what it is like to be on the opposite side as you. I know that hardship.

As someone who has been sexually assaulted, I fear for the safety of our women now that men have been told it is perfectly fine and acceptable to say you will grab someone by the pussy. When I hear the tapes from Trump speaking so rudely about women’s body parts or interviews with his voters claiming that is just “locker room talk”, my skin turns inside out. I feel nails scrapping across my entire body. I remember feeling that my body was not my body. I remember the nightmares, the sounds of trains, the fear. I wonder what HIS “locker room talk” was like. I fear for the next young woman who will be told “I’m your boyfriend”, “Just close your eyes”, “I will kill you if you scream”, or the one who doesn’t remember anything at all.

It’s not that I don’t think you should keep all of the money you earn; it’s that I know what it is like to be handled by men like him and I don’t want another woman to ever experience what I did. I remember being grabbed by the pussy, even if you don’t.

As someone who researched and sought out different religious ideologies to find what I truly believe in my heart, I fear for people who are not mainstream Christians. There was a time in my life when I questioned everything about this life. I sought out shelter in religions of various states. While growing up in south Georgia, I was ridiculed by Christians for questioning the structured Christian church. I remember being called a “heathen” at 14 by a pack of Christian girls. I remember being told I was going to burn in hell at 17 by a Christian boy. I remember friends saying they would pray for me since I wouldn’t attend Sunday service; these same “friends” who were disobeying everything their beloved church was telling them were the rules. Over the years, I attended multiple places of worship in an attempt to find eternal love. I had meetings with leaders of religious homes to find why I didn’t feel like I fit in no matter where I went. I remember feeling lost and being told religion was the answer. But which one? No place of worship ever felt like home, no matter how many I tried. And I know I am/was not alone (don’t worry: I found my answer). In my experience, I learned that when life gets hard, people turn to religion for support. It may not be the religion you want them to turn to but they use their place of worship just like you do. We all pray the same, even if it is to a different entity. We all are searching for peace, just in different locations.

It’s not that I don’t believe in the 2nd amendment; it’s that I believe in Thomas Jefferson’s stance on a “a wall of separation between church and State” so that people can exercise their First Amendment right that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.” After all, religion was listed in the First Amendment. First.

I am fine with you agreeing/disagreeing with economic stances. But you don’t know what others have been through in their lives. You don’t know their experiences. You don’t know what they fear and why.

Be respectful.

You may think taxes are the most important part of this election. You may think immigration reform is the most important. But the person you are speaking to probably disagrees and may think personal liberties are far more important.

Be respectful.

When lecturing someone on why Trump will MAGA, remember you could be speaking to someone who is suicidal due to who they love and are being told not to love.

Be respectful.

When you are posting on social media that “we trumped that cunt,” please remember you could be speaking to an impressionable young male who will repeat what you write in their “locker room.” You daughter is at risk.

Be respectful.

When you say in the office that you can’t wait for “obamacare” to be abolished, you could be speaking to someone with a congenital heart defect who risks losing health care now.

Be respectful.

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2 Comments

  1. Hi Jessica,

    I agree 100%. I am hoping to take a 4 year time out from politics and count blessings and not tears and fears. I have experienced some of the things you speak of. My daughter would not have had health care if not for Planned Parenthood. My sweet baby granddaughter, just diagnosed with epilepsy, will now have a preexisting condition. Not only will it affect her personally, but my son, her father, could not leave his job and current insurance, even if something better came along. None of us should be 2nd class citizens, no matter what. Thank you for your courageous post.

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