It’s Inauguration Day and I’m Almost Through the 5 Stages of Grief

I’ll have CNN on in my office all day today. It will feel like torture. It will feel like a funeral. It will feel like watching a severely unqualified con man get rewarded for capitalizing on people’s fear, bigotry, gullibility, and ignorance of the issues. It will feel like confirmation that people in this country would rather hear comforting lies than seek the truth.

Image credit: iStock
Image credit: iStock

I started feeling depressed last night and it has gotten worse as today has gone on. We’re now under 30 minutes from Donald Trump’s swearing in as the 45th President of the United States.  Over the past two months, I’ve made it through the first three stages of grief: denial, anger, and bargaining.  I’m at depression now, and I’m not sure how long it will last.  I kind of hope it lasts for four years, because I’ll be disgusted with myself if I actually make it to acceptance and convince myself this is normal.

I don’t have a lot to say about this day, except that I’m watching because I don’t want to try to escape it. I need to deal with it, and accept it as reality, and I think watching it will help me do that.  But It’s fucking depressing.  I feel sad for the Obama family, who have been let down by the voting populace.  I feel sad for those exiting their White House jobs, who have worked for 8 years under a family who treats others with respect, class, and grace. I feel even sadder for those who may be staying at their jobs in the White House (if there are any).

Despite being non-Christian, I will not be directly affected by this day as much as my friends and family who are non-male, or non-white, or non-heterosexual. But I mourn for them and I will fight for them, because they are just as American as I am, their rights are the same as mine, and they will need my help.

But I will watch the day unfold. I will not avoid it or refuse to watch it, because I need to witness this in order to effectively deal with it.  Besides, I’m an American who cares about the future of this country, and this day is important.

Kevin Davis

Kevin Davis is the head writer and editor for SecularVoices, co-founder of Young Skeptics, and author of Understanding an Atheist. He is known for local and national secular activism and has spoken at conferences and events such as Reason Rally 2016 and the Ark Encounter Protest and Rally.

View all posts by Kevin Davis →

19 thoughts on “It’s Inauguration Day and I’m Almost Through the 5 Stages of Grief

  1. I’m still at denial, it’s the only way I’ve been coping. Tomorrow I head to the March in DC to get started on anger. I don’t think I’m planning on getting past anger, I think I’ll just stick with that.

    1. Over 200 arrested in protests. A limousine is set on fire. Police and innocent injured. Rocks and firebombs thrown. News reports of outsider insurrectionists and anarchists infiltrating and taking over.

      1. What’s your point? A few anarchists try to disrupt the ceremonies. The next day well over 500,000 protesters peacefully take to the streets of DC, to make their opinions known. And millions more in other cities. I don’t see what the march has to do with the violence the day before.

        Our march is a reflection of what anger looks like when it’s focused and used as a motivation, and not just wasted in pointless violence.

        1. That is true and that is the way to have a demonstration. Evidently the anarchists and rioters could not get into that demonstration, or the security spotted them and they ran.

          1. The Women’s March was awesome and I’m glad there was no violence, not even a hint. I was a happy American on Saturday.

          2. That is certainly commendable and an example for other groups. It certainly shows that peaceful, orderly demonstrations are possible.

  2. I’m anticipating the sad satisfactions of
    -watching Trump discover that he is not King, and
    -watching (some) Trump supporters realize he really is that bad.

    1. I am on tenterhooks hoping that the republican government won’t strip away the protections that keep the president from being king and enacting all the awful that that group wants. They’ve already broken so many laws to get where they are now, enacting laws that infringe on our rights and are unconstitutional. There is a lot of damage they can do.

      1. I’m on pins and needles to hear about all the laws Republicans have broken and how they will act in an unconstitutional manner.

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