Slate Plus

Oh God

The Slate Plus Digest for Nov. 11.

presidential seal.

Photo illustration by Slate. Image by Executive Office of the President of the United States.

I don’t have any jokes right now. This is the worst thing to happen in my lifetime. Here’s some advice on how to cope with your feelings of grief and anxiety, and how to channel them into action.      

From Slate

Jamelle Bouie: “After eight years of a black president—after eight years in which cosmopolitan America asserted its power and its influence, eight years in which women leaned in and blacks declared that their lives mattered—millions of white Americans said enough. They had their fill of this world and wanted the old one back.”

Michelle Goldberg: “Forty-six years ago, Germaine Greer wrote in The Female Eunuch, ‘Women have very little idea of how much men hate them.’ Well, now we do.”

Seth Stevenson on life in Trump’s traveling press corps: “Perhaps I’d been naïve, but it only now dawned on me, in the final week of the campaign, to my great horror, that the real reason they put us in the pen was so they could turn us into props.”

Jim Newell: “The Democratic Party establishment has beclowned itself and is finished.”

Not from Slate

Masha Gessen: “I have lived in autocracies most of my life, and have spent much of my career writing about Vladimir Putin’s Russia. I have learned a few rules for surviving in an autocracy and salvaging your sanity and self-respect. It might be worth considering them now.”

Journalists around the world watch Trump’s victory: “I join three producers on a comfort-eating break in an attempt to focus on a package about a newly-discovered mass grave near Mosul. Lucky you, one says. Today that’s the less terrifying story.

The real bubble is rural America: “To pin this election on the coastal elite is a cop-out. It’s intellectually dishonest, and it’s beneath us.”

David Wong: “If you don’t live in one of these small towns, you can’t understand the hopelessness.”

Very Short Q-and-A

This week’s questions are addressed to Slate video producer Aymann Ismail, whose piece “I’m Muslim, and I’m Afraid, and I Can’t Afford to Show It” ran on Wednesday. The following day, he discussed it on CNN.

Aymann, are you at all worried about becoming a visible face of Muslim resistance to Trump?

Well, yes, because I know so many strong and intelligent Muslims with leadership in their DNA who would do a better job. But if you’re asking if I am afraid of what Donald Trump or his basket of supporters can do, my answer is no. The Muslim community has grown very resilient. I’ll bear whatever attacks come with a silly little smirk underneath my beard. Piece of cake.

What kind of response have you gotten to the piece and the TV interview?

It’s been a very mixed bag. Muslims and non-Muslims alike have been very supportive. I’ve gotten emails from complete strangers offering their sympathy and promises to stand with me. On the other side of the aisle, I’ve been warned to move out of the country. I’ve been called a terrorist more times than I can count. But I was able to have some very good and productive conversations with Trump supporters as well. That makes me confident that there’s still hope for this country to dig itself out of the hole it’s put itself in.

What does it feel like for you on the streets of New York three days later?

In New York City, I have experienced zero harassment in the last three days—outside the context of my work as a journalist, where I’ve visited and documented Trump hotspots. As you can imagine, it’s a different story outside Trump HQ.

But it’s veiled Muslim women who are most commonly the targets of random street harassment, likely in part because of how easily they are identified as Muslim. I wish I had made that clearer in that CNN interview. My sister, who wears a hijab, tells me about her anxiety just leaving her home. Other friends have endless stories of being shouted at and, in some cases, physically assaulted.

Thanks, Aymann, and thanks for your piece.

[an hour-and-a-half later] Damn. Gotta edit that last answer. Guy just now in street: “If one of your boys back home tries to blow up this city I’ll shoot you in the fucking head.”

Thank you for your Slate Plus membership, which makes our journalism possible. Please take care of yourselves and the people around you.

Gabriel Roth
Editorial director, Slate Plus