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    Let’s Make a Deal

    AlexRandolphBy Alex Randolph, City College Trustee

    Donald Trump is going to be President. That is something most humans living on this earth, including he himself, probably never thought would happen. Yet here it is. In my last column, I wrote about the trip my husband and I took across America. One of the many takeaways from my experience seeing middle America and almost a dozen red states was this sense of hopelessness and anger. After eight years of Republican obstructionism, conspiracy theories about President Obama, and a campaign to destroy his Presidency, we are at a point where the country is now more divided than ever before. Election night left me in a state of sadness and despair.

    There is no way to really know yet what Trump’s victory and his goal to “Make America Great Again” means to us here in San Francisco. My sense is that, at least locally and in California, we will be ok. But the people living in the rest of the country and even world might not. He is and his advisors have already talked about reversing hard-fought rights for the LGBT community. He is determined to deport millions of undocumented residents, have Muslims register, ignore climate change, and the bad list of things goes on and on and on.

    I really don’t want to think about it. I don’t want to watch the news anymore. I don’t want to hear about any of his latest tweets. I don’t want to read the names of his disastrous Cabinet appointees. I want to put up a big pink wall and bunker up the next four years.

    LetsMakeaDeal

    However, seceding from the nation or isolating ourselves from the rest of the world is just not an option. On November 14, I joined my fellow City College Trustees at San Francisco City Hall for the #StandUpAsOne Unity Rally to celebrate our diversity and stand up against hate. It was great to see all of the leaders and other locals come together and make a statement to protect San Francisco as a sanctuary city. For many of us, San Francisco has always been that sanctuary and safe place for us to be ourselves. We are a city that believes that equal work deserves equal pay, and where you are welcomed no matter your race, gender, sexual orientation, gender identify, religion, or income. Our community does not “tolerate” diversity; we celebrate it.

    Recently I was excited to attend the Victory Institute’s 2016 LGBT Leader’s Conference in Washington, D.C., the largest gathering of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender elected and appointed officials in the world. It was a perfect medicine for my post-election depression. It left me energized for the fight ahead. President and CEO Aisha Moodie-Mills said it best: “Our community is strongest when our backs are up to the wall and the wind is flying into our face!”

    I was reminded of the many bright spots concerning our incredibly diverse community from the past year. For example, Sam Park became the first openly gay Korean to be elected to the state house in red Georgia. The anti-LGBT Governor in North Carolina, Pat McCrory, lost his re-election. More importantly, despite victories for candidates associated with Donald Trump, 86 LGBT and Victory Fund-endorsed candidates won their elections (yours truly included).

    Since Donald Trump loves to make deals, let’s make one he can’t ignore. Let San Francisco and the LGBT community produce the biggest export of love, compassion, relentless activism, and accountability to the rule of law. If there is one community that knows how to fight and organize it is us. I will not retreat into my San Francisco bubble and safe place, but rather will help to build a big pink wall of resistance, and will make Donald Trump pay for it. Are you with me?

    Alex Randolph is a Trustee for City College of San Francisco. He previously served in President Obama’s administration and as an LGBT advisor for Mayor Newsom. He lives in the Castro with his partner Trevor. Follow him on social media: www.twitter.com/adrandolph & www.facebook.com/AlexDRandolph