Today I cast my vote on behalf of people who need it far more than me

It’s Election Day.

One of my favorite days of the year.

Today I will be going to the polls and casting my vote not for myself but for people in our country who need it far more than me:

  • My African-American friends and students who deserve to live in a country with zero tolerance for racism from its citizens and especially its elected officials

  • My lesbian and gay friends who deserve to love whoever they want absent of any prejudice

  • My immigrant friends and students who deserve to be welcome and respected in this nation of immigrants

  • My friends working for the press, who deserve to do the important work of democracy without being attacked by politicians who are hell bent on eroding Americans’ faith in this essential institution

  • My transgender friends and former students who deserve to live their authentic lives absent any fear or judgement

  • Heather Heyer, an American hero, and all of those who stood beside her in Charlottesville

  • Every American who deserves access to affordable healthcare but does not have it

  • The refugees who have sat in my classroom over the years, worked hard, and deserved a better life

  • My Muslim friends and students who deserve to practice their religion without fear or condemnation

  • My friends serving in the armed forces who deserve leadership from a Commander-in-Chief who was willing to serve when called

  • Children on the southern border who have been placed in cages who deserve happy, healthy, productive childhoods

  • My disabled friends and students who deserve a President who does not mock them on the national stage

  • My fellow middle class Americans, who deserved a tax break far more than the corporations and wealthiest Americans who received enormous tax breaks from Trump and the Republicans

  • My Jewish family and friends, who deserve to live safely and without bigotry

  • Asylum seekers on the southern border whose families have been separated who deserve to be treated with grace, dignity, and in accordance with the law

  • All of the women in my life who deserve to live in a country where they are treated as equals and where the men who commit acts of violence against them (and later brag about it) can never rise to the halls of power

I am a white, straight, healthy, intelligent American man who has lived through a time of relative peace. Never in the history of the world has there been a class of people more fortunate or privileged than me. Never has there been a class of people blessed with more opportunity.

I have not suffered the slings and arrows of bigotry, prejudice, or hatred. I have never suffered sexual harassment or assault. I have not been forced to fight against a glass ceiling. I have not struggled to escape a country where violence and economic and political uncertainty have made it impossible to build a better life for myself and my family. I have not felt the economic peril of living without affordable healthcare.

Today I vote for those who need it most. Today I vote for those who have been ignored, attacked, maligned, misrepresented, and demonized by the President and the cowards of the Republican party who are little more than his co-conspirators.

Today I vote for the people who need my vote the most.

I hope you will do the same.