Editor’s note: Santa Fe Mayor Javier Gonzales posted a version of this note on Facebook after Republican Donald Trump won the presidential race.
COMMENTARY: Dear Cameron and Cadence,
Like many American fathers of daughters, I’ve struggled through the night to find the words on how to greet you this morning. For the first time in your lives you have been able to fully participate in a presidential election!
While you aren’t old enough to vote, you did learn the issues and you became informed of the candidates. You went knocking on doors, had lively debate at your schools and around the kitchen table, made phone calls and said prayers that your candidate would win.
She did not. And believe me I know that it hurts. That hurt may turn to anger and that may cause you to begin to blame others. Don’t let it. Your sadness is OK! But being angry and blaming others is not. Finding empathy and looking for common ground is.
Reaffirm to yourself that your work and time spent on this campaign did pay off. We won New Mexico for Hillary and really good people were elected to office. As this dawn greets you, pray for our new leaders, yes ALL of them, including your dad!
But most importantly, I want you to know that no one, including the president of the United States, gets to tell you how to feel about yourself. No one, including the president of the United States, gets to say that because you’re a Hispanic woman that you don’t have the right to every opportunity afforded to every other American. No one, including the president of the United States, gets to tell you what it is to be an American.
While this morning may seem more gloomy than the one you hoped for, remember that you are proud New Mexicans! You are descendants of strong woman who persevered and overcame uncertain times by placing their faith in God, their families, and most importantly themselves.
Go to school (yes, you have to go) with your chin up — and while our work is cut out and we worry about our nation’s future, know that the two of you have exactly what it takes to help us become a more perfect union.
Javier Gonzales, a Democrat, is Santa Fe’s mayor.