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As a disabled woman, this is what I have to lose if Donald Trump becomes president.

'In your America, I will have three strikes against me.'

As a disabled woman, this is what I have to lose if Donald Trump becomes president.

Dear Donald,

As the Republican nominee for president, you’ve made a lot of people angry — including the disabled community.

Last November, you openly mocked New York Times reporter Serge Kovaleski and then later denied it. That was enough to potentially lose hundreds — maybe even thousands of voters, but you didn’t stop there.


Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images.

You’ve continued to degrade people with disabilities throughout your campaign — and went as far as to ask a crowd of African Americans, “What the hell do you have to lose?” at one of your rallies this past August.

Even though you were specifically addressing that community, I started thinking. As a disabled woman I have a lot to lose too, If you become president.

As a woman with a disability, I'm afraid of what your presidency could mean for me. Even now, I have to work harder to prove myself.

I especially have to work harder as a writer and journalist. It’s a job that has a very high glass ceiling. I’m proud to say I’ve broken through, but I'm still chipping away at some layers. The fact I’m disabled makes it difficult because there’s added pressure to do well every time I write.

But Donald, you’ve made the mountain I climb even steeper with your comments about the disabled and, more recently, your comments about women.

Even now, many aspects of my life have already been compromised and are out of my control.

I don’t want to lose what control I do have — and having that little bit of power makes me feel like I can conquer anything that’s put in front of me. I’m proud to say I am finding my own way in life.

But in “Donald Trump’s America,” women are nothing more than puppets, and disabled folks are especially vulnerable to harassment because you’ve made it seem like all of this is acceptable.

Image via iStock.

If you win on Nov. 8, I have a lot to lose.

I was raised to be strong, but I think my disability has inadvertently made me stronger. My biggest fear is that everything I’ve worked for and built for myself will completely crumble. I keep telling myself, "If I lose my dignity as a disabled woman, he’ll win no matter what." I don’t think I’ll be able to look at myself if that ever happens.

For me, there’s also much more on the line than self pride, though. If America has four years of a Trump presidency ahead, empathy could be a thing of the past. I could just be seen as “a girl in a wheelchair” — the very thing I’ve tried my entire life not to dwell on or call attention to.

In your America, I will have three strikes against me.

I’m a woman who also happens to be a journalist who also has a disability. And Donald, I’ve worked too hard to let a sea of questionable headlines about your candidacy and ethics ruin my life.

Does America really want this kind of uncertainty for the next four years? Do we really deserve this? As President Obama has said numerous times during this election season, “Don’t boo. Vote!”

So, Donald, I'll be voting next week, and it won't be for you.

If you need another look at what I have to lose, I think this commercial featuring Judy Kohn, the mother of a disabled son, will put everything in perspective — period.

Need a mood boost to help you sail through the weekend? Here are 10 moments that brought joy to our hearts and a smile to our faces this week. Enjoy!

1. How much does this sweet little boy adore his baby sister? So darn much.

Oh, to be loved with this much enthusiasm! The sheer adoration on his face. What a lucky little sister.

2. Teens raise thousands for their senior trip, then donate it to their community instead.

When it came time for Islesboro Central School's Class of 2021 to pick the destination for their senior class trip, the students began eyeing a trip to Greece or maybe even South Korea. But in the end, they decided to donate $5,000 they'd raised for the trip to help out their community members struggling in the wake of the pandemic instead.

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