Hello. It’s been a while.
In honor of Juneteenth, I’d like to take the opportunity to discuss my political journey since I started this blog back in 2013.
I broke up with the GOP in the summer of 2016. Mostly because I refused to back Trump. It seemed like a no-brainer to me. It wasn’t to my friends and my extended political network. Breaking up was a mutual, messy affair. But I made it to the other side in one piece. And I like to think that I have changed for the better.
So, yes, I’m no longer the Libertarian Latina. I wanted nothing to do with Trump’s GOP, and I spent some time reflecting on how I got so close to joining such a dangerous group so I don’t repeat that mistake. Leaving the GOP cost me almost all my friendships and future professional opportunities in conservatism. My new life was difficult at first, but it’s important to stand by your principles. In doing so, I learned you must own your mistakes in order to move forward. I have made a commitment to look for ways to hold myself accountable. It’s been tough, but I’m grateful for the opportunities I have had to grow beyond this period in my life.
While I enjoyed sharing my political opinions on this blog and reading your comments, I definitely should have exercised more restraint, particularly regarding my criticism on Ta-Nehisi Coates that I wrote as an editor for The National Interest. His writings have helped me realize that it really will take something as sweeping as reparations to even begin to address the structural racism in this country. I was wrong to say that the problems of the African-American community were limited to personal choices. American history has shown that institutions have robbed African Americans (and other minorities) opportunities to make the best decisions for themselves over and over again. The fight for equal rights and opportunities will never truly be over. But reparations and other restorative legislation will be a good place to start.
I truly believed that as a country, we had moved past the pre-Civil Rights movement levels of racism in this country. I was wrong about that, and naive to believe so. Since Trump became the nominee the levels of racism, sexism, homophobia, and xenophobia have alarmed me. Since Trump took office, he has threatened our national security, democracy, and rule of law on a daily basis. Trump’s surrogates defend his lies and reprehensible actions on network television, hoping he will see and bring them to his inner circle. When he does, it’s only a matter of time before they are unceremoniously pushed out. Our allies don’t know what to make of our internal chaos and our adversaries rejoice. By almost every measure, America and the world are in a worse position than when Obama left office two and a half years ago.
But all is not lost. People are fighting back. I think the 2020 race will be a good start in setting things right again. I voted for Hillary Clinton in 2016 and I hope to vote for another woman for president in 2020. As long as there is life, there is hope. It took me a long time to regain hope, but now that I’ve got it again I won’t let it go.
Thank you all.