About a week ago, the world seemed to come to a standstill. The world, as we know it, experienced a tumultuous wave of emotion that ranged from shock to ecstasy to panic to relief. This was due to the events that occurred over the past week or so – events that caused the leader of the free world to be upheld by a man who appears not to have the capabilities to reign with the freedoms of every man, woman and child in mind.

Donald Trump was elected President of the United States (POTUS). There were riots and uproars as well as multiple sighs of relief and pleasure from those who were either tired of hearing about the election or from those who had in fact voted for Trump. It all became startlingly clear as to what his presidency would mean for either the world or for individuals themselves. Something of this nature may be viewed as completely negative or we can take a very different message from this and choose to start something positive. Read Dr. Raywat’s article titled, “A Plea for Optimism in the Trump Era“.

Some women, in particular, were very perturbed by this result and chose to speak out about it in a public manner. As many celebrity women had campaigned for the DNC and spoke out at rallies, this election shocked them immensely and they decided to say something. One such celebrity, Lady Gaga, did just that.

Harper’s Bazaar magazine featured an essay penned by Ms. Gaga, which described the plight of modern women and what it means to be a woman in this day and age. The essay itself is very well written and makes a few good points. However, the line that really stands out describes the definition of a “woman” in a strong and assertive manner which is both positive and uplifting.

Ms. Gaga writes,

 “Being a lady today means being a fighter. It means being a survivor. It means letting yourself be vulnerable and acknowledging your shame or that you’re sad or you’re angry. It takes great strength to do that.”

While this essay is not directly related to the election, it poses a few very good points about womanhood. For instance, the fact that women are strong and independent is the result of hard work and motivation. Women in the modern age have to fight for what they want. Nothing gets handed to them and brilliant success only comes to those who deserve it. While feminism has made many strides in the past, women still have not reached the point they need to be at.

Gaga also brings up the fact that women are afraid to show too much emotion for fear of being judged as weak or inadequate. It’s a difficult choice as a woman to balance both your emotions with the drive to be seen as competent and capable. It’s a constant struggle expressed by many individuals but it is also one that can be overcome. Showing emotion is not a sign of weakness; rather, it is a sign of good character and humanity. It shows that the individual is not a brick wall and is capable of making decisions that can be rational due to the expression of said emotion.

As well, this brings into question the concept of labelling. The entire world is obsessed with placing labels on everything and that is also a primitive concept that is dragging us down. People simply need to be happy existing with one another without labelling each other because that is a form of judgement that is holding us back. People should be what they want to be and no one should have the right to doubt another person’s potential. It’s archaic and mindless and it has no place in this modern day world.

Women consistently have to overcome barriers that question their capabilities. And by electing an official who has consistently proven that he is not interested in protecting women; it only makes our struggle harder. Banding together to create a positive result can help empower women and propel us into the future. We can only take the information that has been handed to us and choose to overcome the negative in favour of the positive. This means that we should be supporting each other and encouraging one another to excel in our chosen fields. It could also mean that we open up more positive programs that help young women gain more self-confidence.

Uniting against a tyrant means that we, as women, must band together and unite to form a positive outcome out of a seemingly negative starting point. It’s up to us to choose our future. We are capable of so much more than we think and we can emerge from this unscathed. Realizing one’s potential is the very first step to this and we are more than capable of rising up to the challenge.