Dan Savage Post-Election Prognosis: Cities as Frontlines for Resistance

Click to listen to this week’s Savage Lovecast
Click to listen to this week’s Savage Lovecast

I wanted to share some inspiring post-election advice from someone who I really admire: Dan Savage. Savage, a father, husband, and a wonderfully out gay man, is a sex advice columnist based in Seattle. I think his advice is insightful and entertaining. I am an avid listener to his Savage Lovecast podcast, which comes out every Tuesday morning. The Lovecast typically opens with a monologue with a generous dollop of Savage’s radically inclusive left politics before he responds to readers questions on love, sex, and relationships. I am not sure that I would call Dan Savage a full-on urbanist, but now and then his urbanism shows. He is not preaching about walking, bicycling and transit, but he does mention his dislike of driving and his love for cities.

This morning, on Lovecast episode 525, Savage responds to last week’s election results and points to cities as where we can build solutions to Trump’s bigotry.

We can turn things around, if we don’t give up. We can turn things around if we organize. And if we fight back.

The most important ways we have to fight back right now are in the cities.

Hillary Clinton won the popular vote. In any other democracy in the world, as Lawrence O’Donnell pointed out on MSNBC the other night – in any other country in the world: The popular vote, you know what that’s called? The vote. In any other democracy, she would be president. Winning the popular vote means winning the election, because the popular vote is the vote. Winning the popular vote. Winning the vote means winning the election. Not here. Because of the anti-democratic Electoral College.

But we are the majority. People who voted against Trump are the majority. Hillary Clinton got more votes, by millions, than Trump did. Millions, plural, than Trump did.

So, when you look around this country, where you live today, please don’t feel estranged from it. Please don’t feel like you are the outlier. Please don’t feel like you are the alien. You are the majority. We are the mainstream.

And when Hillary Clinton won the popular vote, you know how she won? She won it with the cities.

Cities are liberal and progressive and diverse and forward thinking.

My son, who I mentioned a few podcasts ago – and how proud I was of him for voting in his first presidential election at 18, and getting to vote in his first presidential election for a woman. He texted me on the night of the election – in shock. He texted me to say “but she had every major city.” I wrote him back to say cities are democratic and diverse. It’s harder to convince people to hate and fear people they actually know and interact with every day. That’s what we have in cities and that’s what we’re going to defend.

Big cities, big city mayors, big city residents, big city voters – we’re the frontlines of the resistance to Donald J. Trump.

We have to pledge right now that we’re going to stay engaged and stay in the fight. We’re not going to walk off the field. We are not going to cede an inch. That we are going to fight for every right guaranteed us. We are going to fight for every individual. We’re going to fight for the rights of our immigrant friends, neighbors, and co-workers. We’re going to fight for the rights of our Muslim friends, neighbors, and co-workers. And our trans friends, neighbors, and co-workers. And our lesbian and gay friends, neighbors, and co-workers. We’re going to fight for the rights and the families of six-year-olds growing up in Portland, Oregon, in brown skin, who feel endangered and threatened now by this monster who’s moving into the Oval Office.

We can do that starting in the cities.

There’s plenty more on this week’s Lovecast – how to deal with our frustration and disillusionment, how to talk with kids about the election. Listen to the whole episode here.

Listen to Dan Savage on Savage Lovecast and often on Blabbermouth, The Stranger’s politics podcast (more similar great commentary on cities in the first post-election Blabbermouth). Read his books and advice columns, too.