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Hillary Clinton’s Concession Speech Was Exactly What We Needed to Hear

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at SBU chapter.

She’s beauty and she’s grace. Some may consider that a bit of an oversell, however considering the campaign that she, and the entirety of America endured, I think that at the very least she deserves that recognition. She shared more personability in those near 15 minutes than I think many of us have seen from her throughout her many runs in office. To her credit, tough as nails was the only approach she was offered by the assumptions made by the male dominated political sphere that she was in. Regardless of your opinions on her politics, her choices and shortcomings, she deserves credit for standing her ground for all that she has fought for, for being the voice of so many who didn’t in the past haven’t had the voice or courage to speak up.

In my women and politics class we have discussed many topics, making this timing of taking this class quite interesting as the first major party female nominee went up against Donald Trump. However one the most impactful ideas that I have taken from this election experience and this class was the idea that young people, specifically women, cannot begin to achieve what they cannot see. It is very difficult for young women to realistically see themselves in positions of power, nonetheless political power and even more so, a seat in the oval office, if they cannot see others having attained that. In her concession speech, Hillary mentioned how throughout this election she was grateful to be our champion, a champion of women who played hardball against a competitor who some might say embody the opposite of the social progress we have been working towards; but nonetheless she has crawled her way to the top of that ladder, and that image is the closest we have come to show our young women that, yes it can be done. No, it will not always be fair and yes sometimes you have to fight a little harder than others, but you can get there. She had no problem in admitting the pain of her loss, however she used this as an opportunity to show that losing this battle isn’t losing the race. A setback isn’t worth abandoning your beliefs, which I think is the greatest advice to take from this entire experience.

Regardless of your opinion of her, “never stop believing that fighting for what’s right is worth it, because it is” rings true. To allow the divisive and disturbing ideas that have come about throughout this election that bring us back to days of believing that those who are different from us are the ‘other’ rather than acknowledging how we all come from the same human race and deserve the same respect, is setting back all the hard work that so many have done. It’s these times where the darkness tries to take over that we must remember that we must keep fighting. People are afraid of people who don’t quit, and women, minorities, LBGQT have all gotten this far, although not far enough, because we haven’t stopped fighting. Continue the good fight; show the world that we are the great America that we already know we are. Accepting and loving and a place where we have the right to voice our opinions, that even if you don’t agree with who is going to the next president you at least have the right to say so! It would be naïve to suggest that this place we call home is perfect, and this election has shown us that we are far from it, but this has given our country the opportunity to reevaluate exactly where we really are compared to where we thought we were. We have work to do, but we still have our voice.

We are not who we thought we were as a nation, which has become incredibly clear in this election. And if you are one of millions who believe that equality and acceptance should reign over prejudice and hate, than yes we still have work to do. But as she said, condemning the winner and abandoning the nation at a time where we need love and those ideas of equality and acceptance more than ever only lets in the darkness, turns us backwards and away from the light. We still have the power. More voices have been heard and people can now recognize the divisive nature that has hidden in the shadows for so long. We cannot despair but rather take the drive that many have had in supporting equality and justice and put it into our days, every single day. The greatest fear that people have is those that will not quite, those that refuse to back down, and even in these moments where it doesn’t make sense, how hate could make it so far, we must remember how far we’ve come and why we must continue to fight in the first place. 

This previously appeared on Emily Quinn’s blog, to read more please visit: www.fefifofun.wordpress.com 

I'm a Junior Strategic Communications major at Saint Bonaventure University, also known as the greatest place on earth. Hobbies include eating ridiculous amounts of food, watching Scandal and swimming. I'm probably wearing converse.