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Blue State Blues: Seattle Millennials Are Barely Keeping It Together

Spark Public

Blue State Blues: Seattle Millennials Are Barely Keeping It Together

How are local millennials coping with the election results?

November 9, 2016

No matter who you voted for, we can all agree on one thing: last night was certainly unexpected. For months we’ve been fed polls and news that all amounted to the same conclusion: Trump had no chance of winning. Boy, were we wrong.

And while previous polls predicted that the millennial vote would be overwhelmingly for Hillary, it just wasn’t enough.

So how are millennials in Seattle feeling about this election upset? Here’s what a few had to say. 

Patrick Carver

How are you feeling about the presidential election outcome?

I’m feeling like most of the country has gone completely mad.

“It’s terrifying to think about health care getting dismantled, people losing their rights, hate being bred and celebrated — and fear that the rest of the world is going to look down on us even more than they have. And we’ve worked so hard to build our image and build our foundation... it’s just terrifying.”

Were you surprised?

“I was absolutely supporting Hillary, and I just never thought it would happen like this. [I thought] there was no possible chance.”

How are you coping?

“Tears. Hugs. Telling myself not to drink afterwards.”


Teana Lopez

I almost feel like it is like Brexit in Europe, you know? Nobody thought it was real until it actually happened.

What went through your mind when it became official that Trump was our new president?

“I stopped looking at the election right before everything was finalized because I didn’t want to go to sleep knowing — because I just felt it coming — and I woke up at 3:00 in the morning and I saw that Trump was president... All my anger was internalized. I couldn’t even be outwardly angry... I just imploded and I was like, ‘shit!’—  Just ‘shit’ — that's all I could think.”

How are you feeling today?

“I’m not angry, I’m disappointed. I’m disappointed in the people of America. Like, this is what they want? It seems like they’re feeding into the establishment that they want to change so badly, but the establishment wants exactly this. They don’t want people to progress — people of color, women — that’s not what they want. And now the House and the Senate are Republican, so we’ll just see what kind of chaos comes with this. I’m terrified.”

Were you surprised?

“I thought Hillary was going to win by a landslide... this whole time I thought Trump was a joke. I thought he would drop out in the middle, but he’s been so persistent and it got kind of annoying. And now that it’s happening, I almost feel like it’s like Brexit in Europe, you know? Nobody thought it was real until it actually happened. So I’m a little bit in shock as well. I can’t process it.”

As a woman of color, are you worried?

“I feel very nervous. I don’t know if anything would happen to me in Seattle, but I fear for people who are maybe undocumented or maybe live in areas where they’re not welcome to begin with. There are a lot of communities — of Muslim people, of Mexican people, Asian people — that already are [made to feel] not wanted there. So after this, everybody’s so riled up. Trump supporters are so overzealous... I fear for people being hurt in the streets. I fear for people just being assaulted, getting deported or getting reported to the police like ‘Oh. my neighbor is an immigrant, come get them.’

People think it’s not going to happen but it happened in the 1940s, you know, when we thought Communism was going to come get us. People were reporting their neighbors. It could happen again. It’s not unimaginable to me.”

How are you coping?

I want to say I’d leave the country, but that’s expensive. But I am close to Canada — I could just dip out. I don’t know. I’ve never experienced a campaign like this. I thought the Obama/McCain campaign was really intense, but I feel like America is showing its true colors and I don’t know how to react.

On a more positive note, we ran into three girls at the Seattle Center Armory today who decided to spend their lunch break giving out free hugs. 


Annelih Hamilton


We’re not just blue and red, we’re purple. So if people ask me if I’m optimistic about our future, yes, because I have to be.

“It’s really about exercising empathy, really being there for each other. We’re bruised but not broken. I really believe that love will ripple. We have to empower each other. We have to love our neighbor. Look at the map. Look at the electoral map. Why is it red? That’s all of us, you know? We’re not just blue and red; we’re purple. So if people ask me if I’m optimistic about our future, yes. Because I have to be.”

Annelih also shared with us an encouraging message she posted on her Facebook page this morning:

How we act today is a sign of how we are going to move forward TOGETHER as a country.

If your heart is heavy like mine, I stand with you. If you have the directly opposite opinion as mine (and so many of my loved ones who are afraid for our future), I also stand with you.

Now is not the time to be divided. If anything, this #Election2016 has taught me that we need to unite more than ever and bring out the best in one another.

I am sad. I am scared. I am in disbelief, but simultaneously not surprised with this outcome. Clearly our country is much more afraid and resistant to progress than I dared to think.

But that won't stop me from thinking my thoughts, voicing my opinions and sharing my heart. In the most respectful and unifying manner possible.

I am awake and am going to my day job and embarking on the mission I've been on for as long as I can remember:

Going to spread love like glitter.

#LoveWillRipple #NotMeUs #StandWithMe #IStandWithYou

“We can choose to see the best in one another.”
— President Barack Obama

Also, if you’re feeling overwhelmed with social media and people, check out this Seattle Times article to help you set healthy boundaries. 



Jen Germain

Jen Germain is a media producer with the Creative Services team at Cascade Public Media, helping to drive brand and programming initiatives. Previously, Jen worked as a producer with Spark Public, where she helped lead digital strategy and mentor a team of millennial multimedia journalists. Find her on Twitter @jengermain. 

More stories by Jen Germain

Abby Shalawylo

Abby Shalawylo is Spark Public's freelance social media producer/talent. Abby is a senior at Seattle Pacific University majoring in communications with a theatre minor. She is a Disney College Program alumni and currently works at CenturyLink Field for the Seattle Seahawks and Sounders FC games. A few of her favorite things include musicals, movies, chocolate and getting to know people.

More stories by Abby Shalawylo