It’s that day of the year when the internet and social media gets flooded with the resolutions for a better year by our friends and memories of the year that just passed by. Is it just me or do many people strike the same tone when writing both messages? I always get the feeling that most people seem to have overcome the world’s most insane obstacles over the past year, but also that they were the strongest they could have been as they overcame the adversity they experienced in their lives. It also always seems like everyone has these wonderful goals for the new year that they just know they will achieve. 

Really? We all feel defeated from the prior year, but also like we tackled our lives like Rocky? All of us feel like we sailed the same ship throughout 2016 and into 2017? Social media really allows us all to paint the picture of the perfect Hollywood life. I guess it is great that so many people want to look at life with a optimistic swing as a new year approaches.

Was 2016 really that dreadful of a year for so many or is this how many of us end they every year? I know that 2016 has been a rough year. No, we didn’t experience a stock market crash. No, we aren’t in a depression and we didn’t have an enormous natural disaster. What we have experienced here in America, and I think maybe the UK experienced this with Brexit but I could be wrong, has been disaster of the soul. 

That is pretty bad when you say it out loud. We’ve had tornado Trump tear through the lands of our nation from the east to the west spreading seeds of hate, lies, confusion and bigotry. That is one thing I know has left a lot of Americans, and others across the globe, feeling defeated and also like fighters. 

I guess it’s great that people feel empowered, optimistic and driven to write and speak about their past and and their year to come in anyway they wish. It always just strikes me as funny that so many Facebook postings are similar and triumphant at the end of the year. For me I don’t feel very triumphant. I feel defeated, but I want to take from the optimistic slant so many people are wonderfully pulling from. For me the only thing on my mind involves politics. That probably isn’t a shocker to anyone though. 

My resolutions this year aren’t going to be my normal resolutions. Yes, I do want to go to the gym regularly, pay off a loan and be a nicer person… how sweet that all is yet it isn’t enough. What I really want to pledge as my resolutions is bigger than me though. My 2017 resolutions are:

  1. To be vigilant. Trump has inspired hate in many and we need to be vigilant for our safety and the safety of others, but we also need to be vigilant and wary of what Trump and his team are doing in DC. Trump has vowed to increase our surveillance state, rollback reproductive rights and pass discriminatory anti-LGBTQ laws among many other horrible things. 
  2. To be vocal. Our voices will be what makes the difference over the next 4 years. We need to continue to make ourselves heard. We need to follow in the footsteps of all the amazing activists and Civil Rights leaders before us who have shown us how to protest and fight against wrongdoing when wrong is being done. We protest, but we do so civilly. We practice civil disobedience and we do so diligently and daily. We write, we speak, we petition and we protest. We will “be the change we want to see in the world.” Gandhi 
  3. To not give up: It will be easy to feel defeated with internet trolls, hate and ignorance surrounding us everyday. With intollarnace hurled at our doorstep thanks to the ease of social media it is easy to feel beaten up on a daily basis by people we have never even met. I will not let these “people” get to me in 2017 or I will at least work harder to ignore them. They dilute our messages of love and kindness when we fight with them. We shouldn’t give them that power and I won’t any more. 
  4. To be stronger together: I will pull strength from my friends, family and of course my entire progressive and liberal online world. That’s what we have built throughout 2015 and 2016 fighting for Hillary Clinton. A community of people who will and is stronger together. A community of people who will fight for women’s rights, the rights of the LGBTQ community, the rights of immigrants, the rights of refugees, the rights of minorities and those of all religions. 

Here is to 2017. We are a community that is beautiful, diverse and stronger together. We will not give up, we will be vocal and we will be vigilant. I look forward to spending it with all of you.