We keep doing what’s right and believing in our core principles, and we demonstrate, using whatever disciplinary tools we have available to us, how and why it matters to think critically about the way we run our planet. We hope our teaching styles are arresting enough to grab the attention of our country(ies) of disaffected students, we continue to stand for liberty and justice for all, and then, quite simply, we pray, to any god or none, that our friends and neighbors stand for those things too.
We stand for art, for language, for beauty, for history, and we keep going as we have kept going through civil war, through economic hardship, through desperately cruel injustices and through the worst perversions of everything that the values of our country represent. We get up the morning after an election and we always keep teaching and learning and helping those less fortunate and promulgating the belief that no fellow human is truly evil, really.
And we take the long view, the one that holds that the course of human events is not changed by a single election, but by the concerted actions of committed individuals over a long period of time. I am learning to be a historian. And so taking the long view is what I am learning to do. I have never been one for policy proposals or politicking, but I am much given to high-minded rhetoric. High-minded rhetoric has encouraged people before, and so maybe it’s worth trying now. If my rhetoric, empty though it may be, carries any weight with you, dear reader, I urge you to keep voting your conscience, but not to despair when elections reflect values so very antithetical to liberty and justice for all. Keep doing your jobs, keep putting queer shoulders to wheels (I know I do) and keep struggling in Sisyphean labor in the name of art and love—and keep preparing the lesson plans you will someday use to teach the next generation to do the same.