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What I have to lose if Trump becomes president is intangible, but scary.

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

What I have to lose if Trump becomes president is intangible, but scary.

“We are going to make America great again!” Trump spits from my screen.

Thousands cheer; millions tremble. Most of us watch, horrified, elated, transfixed.

“He won’t win,” my roommate assures me. “And even if he does, he won’t be able to do all the things he wants to do. There are enough good people… They won’t let him get away with it.”


I nod, and we fall silent.

Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images.

For some of us, it’s easy to distance ourselves from this election because it feels so absurd and surreal … like a nightmare unfolding in the palms of our hands.

As long as there’s a screen between us and the fear, as long as presidential debates feel more science fiction than "Black Mirror," we can hide behind sassy sound bites and meticulously manufactured indifference without ever pausing to ask ourselves that terrifying question:

What if Trump actually wins?

But for others of us, this election holds a lot of evident risk.

This August, Trump asked Americans of color what they have to lose if they vote for him. Upworthy staff writer Erin Canty posted a powerful response. And when I read what she had to say, the screen cracked. For the first time, I thoroughly considered the consequences — the true consequences — of a Trump presidency.

As a cisgendered middle-class white woman, I’d never really had to think about it. In this election, my privilege is evident. Trump’s America would be kinder to me than it would to almost any other demographic and that security can make it easy to become complacent.

When I finally set aside the blinders of my privilege, though, I remembered two very important things:

First, I remembered that being an intersectional feminist means concerning myself with the difficulties that all men and women face — and not just those that directly affect me. This is easy to forget and important to remember. There is much at stake in this election, especially for the minority members of our communities.

Second, I am reminded that there are certain losses from which checks and balances cannot protect us. These are losses of a less literal nature that require no legislation, that we would all suffer the second the results of the election reveal my worst fear.

It turns out, in Trump’s America, there’s actually a lot both you and I stand to lose, the least of which has to do with one important idea: hope.

Image via iStock.

1. As a woman, I would lose my self-worth and sense of security.

When you look at his words and actions, Trump’s misogyny paints in vivid detail what life as a woman would look like in his America. It involves women figuratively dropping to their knees, and no, it’s not a "pretty picture."

Trump’s America isn’t one that respects its women. Trump’s America is an America that values us based on the appearance of bodies we aren’t legally allowed to control. It’s an America of legislators that would pass more regulations on my uterus than on a corporation, that would punish women in back alleys but pardon men in locker rooms. It’s an America where you get six months for being a rapist and 16 years for exposing one.

Trump’s America is an America where men have more rights to my body than I do. I can’t feel valued; I can’t feel safe in an America like that.

2. As an American, I would lose my national pride.

America is a flawed country with so much work to do. But when I look back at how far we’ve come, I’m so proud to belong to a nation that always strives to become better than we were.

But how can I be proud of an America that won’t acknowledge its mistakes? An America that condemns the audacity of the first lady reminding us that our nation was built by slaves, yet refuses to see the problem with a country whose government only took one year to kill 102 unarmed black men but 232 years to elect one.

I can’t be proud of an America where guns have more protections than the people who die by them, an America that’s horrified by a transgendered person in the “wrong” bathroom but numb to the news of yet another mass shooting. I can’t be proud of an America of nearly 4 million square miles that only has room for Native Americans on its sports jerseys.

I can’t be proud of Donald Trump’s America, an America that refuses to change.

Image via iStock

3. As a human, I would lose some faith in our future.

Progress is never perfect. There’s no civilization in this world that has only just moved forward. Every now and then, we falter, take a step back, and then find our footing again.

But we can’t afford to fall this far. America needs to keep moving. If we backtrack now, I don’t know how we’ll recover. If we let our fear paralyze us, or turn us on each other, hate will divide us.

At the end of the day, no matter who you’re voting for, one thing is true: We all want America to be great.

I don’t believe in Trump, but I believe in that.

Image via iStock

From now on, I'm making a promise to stop pointing fingers at the “bad people” who made this mess and the “good people” who will fix it. It’s time to take responsibility for my country, to turn my disillusionment into determination and my inaction into incentive.

It’s time to ask ourselves what we can do to make this America one we can believe in.

Let’s get to work.

What the hell do you have to lose?

Courtesy of Verizon
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If someone were to say "video games" to you, what are the first words that come to mind? Whatever words you thought of (fun, exciting, etc.), we're willing to guess "healthy" or "mental health tool" didn't pop into your mind.

And yet… it turns out they are. Especially for Veterans.

How? Well, for one thing, video games — and virtual reality more generally — are also more accessible and less stigmatized to veterans than mental health treatment. In fact, some psychiatrists are using virtual reality systems for this reason to treat PTSD.

Secondly, video games allow people to socialize in new ways with people who share common interests and goals. And for Veterans, many of whom leave the military feeling isolated or lonely after they lose the daily camaraderie of their regiment, that socialization is critical to their mental health. It gives them a virtual group of friends to talk with, connect to, and relate to through shared goals and interests.

In addition, according to a 2018 study, since many video games simulate real-life situations they encountered during their service, it makes socialization easier since they can relate to and find common ground with other gamers while playing.

This can help ease symptoms of depression, anxiety, and even PTSD in Veterans, which affects 20% of the Veterans who have served since 9/11.

Watch here as Verizon dives into the stories of three Veteran gamers to learn how video games helped them build community, deal with trauma and have some fun.

Band of Gamers www.youtube.com

Video games have been especially beneficial to Veterans since the beginning of the pandemic when all of us — Veterans included — have been even more isolated than ever before.

And that's why Verizon launched a challenge last year, which saw $30,000 donated to four military charities.

And this year, they're going even bigger by launching a new World of Warships charity tournament in partnership with Wargaming and Wounded Warrior Project called "Verizon Warrior Series." During the tournament, gamers will be able to interact with the game's iconic ships in new and exciting ways, all while giving back.

Together with these nonprofits, the tournament will welcome teams all across the nation in order to raise money for military charities helping Veterans in need. There will be a $100,000 prize pool donated to these charities, as well as donation drives for injured Veterans at every match during the tournament to raise extra funds.

Verizon is also providing special discounts to Those Who Serve communities, including military and first responders, and they're offering a $75 in-game content military promo for World of Warships.

Tournament finals are scheduled for August 8, so be sure to tune in to the tournament and donate if you can in order to give back to Veterans in need.

Courtesy of Verizon

Ready for the weekend? Of course, you are. Here's our weekly dose of good vibes to help you shed the stresses of the workweek and put yourself in a great frame of mind.

These 10 stories made us happy this week because they feature amazing creativity, generosity, and one super-cute fish.

1. Diver befriends a fish with the cutest smile

Hawaiian underwater photographer Yuki Nakano befriended a friendly porcupine fish and now they hang out regularly.

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