When Trump takes office in 70 days, the risk begins. Here's how you can take control now.
Trump won. Now what?
President-elect Trump ran a campaign of exclusion and fear. So until he shows us otherwise, it's smart to hope for the best but expect the worst when it comes to his governing style.
But there is some ... good news. There are 70 full days between noon Eastern time today, Nov. 10, 2016, and noon on Inauguration Day on Jan. 20, 2017.
If Trump intends to act on any or all of the promises he made in the past 18 months, there are a few things you and your family might want to do now to prepare for a Trump presidency.
Here they are:
1. If you're working or living in this country on a visa, work permit, or outdated passport, know the status of your documents.
Trump campaigned on building a wall between the U.S. and Mexico and didn't rule out mass deportations. As news of his election spread, uncertainty and fear took over.
"They are crying in despair," immigrant advocate Gaby Pacheco wrote in a Facebook post. "To those who voted for Trump, know that you have put a target on our backs."
Before Trump makes any sweeping changes to immigration policy, make sure you and your family secure or renew your work permits or visas as needed.
Also, if you're transgender, take this time to secure or renew your passport in your correct gender. That may be very difficult to do under the new administration.
2. Talk to your health care provider about birth control options that will outlast a Trump presidency.
Under the Obama administration, Congress worked tirelessly to defund Planned Parenthood and push abstinence-only sex education. With Obama in the Oval Office, their plans stopped cold. He even delivered on free birth control. But that may change.
Abortion providers and reproductive justice organizations remained optimistic in the wake of the news. “He’s not the first Republican president who has wanted to overturn Roe," National Abortion Federation President Vicki Saporta told BuzzFeed News. "Ronald Regan and the two Bushes did, and none of them were successful.”
Even so, if Trump rolls back Obamacare or cuts funding to Planned Parenthood and other community health organizations, many women and families could be left without affordable contraception options. If you're currently taking birth control, talk to your health care provider about options for reversible, long-term birth control like implants or intra-uterine devices. Depending on your plan, or lack thereof, these options may be available for free or a reduced cost.
3. Get loud and serious about climate change.
We're about to have a president who thinks global warming is a hoax.
Just one day after the election, stock in the world's largest manufacturer of wind turbines plummeted. The future of green jobs, much-needed regulation, and tough policy looks bleak.
But we can do a lot in 70 days and after that. It's time to get loud. We need to stand by our experts, our academics, our Leonardo DiCaprios and make this the issue of our day. Because it is. In the interim, make small changes around your home and re-think the way you eat, shop, and travel. Small changes can add up, and in the wake of sweeping change, it's all we've got.
4. Support organizations making all of these things possible with your time, energy, or dollars.
Helping new residents and undocumented families, protecting reproductive rights, and funding green innovations isn't often easy or cheap. There are people and organizations working hard to do all of these things and much, much more. But these organizations can't persist without support.
Step up to the plate and volunteer. If you have the capacity to do so, contribute money or in-kind donations. Tweet, talk-up, and share the brilliant work these organizations do so those in need can find these valuable resources.
5. Embrace kindness.
Support people who don't feel at home in Trump's America.
This one isn't just for the next 70 days; it's forever.
Trump succeeded because he used hate and fear to divide and activate the electorate. He was openly hostile to Latinos, Muslims, blacks, the LGBTQ community, and people with disabilities. And while that worked for his campaign, that's no way to run a country. All of us dedicated to goodness, truth, and kindness need to stand together and stand up to white supremacy, misogyny, and discrimination.
Let's stand together, no matter what. Embrace kindness. Listen to and uplift underrepresented voices. Don't look to Canada; look right here. Let's make the country we want. Bigotry will not win the day.
We have — at most — 70 days before Obama hands the White House over to Trump.
But we have a lifetime to work toward a common goal: creating a nation and government that works for all of us.
It starts today.