Like most millennials, Jennifer Lawrence was #WithHer. Also like most millennials, she enjoys the cinematic oeuvre of Darren Aronofsky, and freelances for Vice. In an essay for Broadly, the site’s lady-centric section, Lawrence urged the nation’s disaffected Trump-haters to take a substantive stand.
Lawrence, who is pretty and blonde but also likes beer and doesn’t take herself too seriously, is one of America’s most likable women. If people liked Hillary Clinton as much as they like Jennifer Lawrence, our first female president-elect would be celebrating on a jet ski with Amy Schumer right now. Unfortunately, a white knight named Donald Trump—complete with white hood and cape—rode in at the last minute to save the former Secretary of State from the job she had spent her entire life working toward. It was one huge, unexpected, apocalyptic night for America. Then again, why would we have ever expected the qualified woman to get the gig over the loud, obnoxious, KKK-endorsed candidate?
Many of us feel like we are living in a nightmare and just can’t seem to wake up (Kendall Jenner, is this what sleep paralysis feels like)? In the hours and days since the news broke, various media outlets and public figures have attempted to motivate the masses, in the hopes of turning communal mourning towards collective action. Lawrence, who joined her new boyfriend Darren Aronofsky in getting out the vote for Hillary Clinton via FaceTime, is one of the many celebrities who’s publicly working through her grief. She questions, “Is this the stark reality? It doesn't matter how hard you work or how qualified you are, at the end of the day, you're not a man? Is that what we just learned?”
Defeat and depression isn’t inspiring. But there’s a small measure of comfort in commiserating over the unfairness of it all; in succumbing, for just a second, to utter confusion. Lawrence writes, “If you're a woman and you're worried that no matter how hard you work or how much you learn, there will always be a glass ceiling, then I don't really know what to say. I don't know what I would tell my daughter if I were you.” Of course, this being a celebrity open letter, Lawrence eventually goes the pep rally route. “We should think strongly and clearly about what to do next because we cannot change the past,” she insists. “If you're worried about the health of our planet, find out everything you can about how to protect it. If you're worried about racial violence love your neighbor more than you've ever tried to before—no matter what they believe or who they voted for. If you're afraid of a wall putting us all into another recession then organize and stand against it.”
Lawrence concludes by insisting that Clinton’s legacy and animus belongs to us all now. Of course, if Tuesday night taught us anything, it’s that dedicating your life to working hard and doing good won’t protect you from a stunning, debilitating defeat. Still, the Oscar-winning actress urges, “We will keep educating ourselves and working twice as hard as the man next to us because we know now that it is not fair. It is not fair in the workplace, so you make it impossible to fail. And like Hillary, it might not work.”
As a wise man once said, “Technically, you cannot polish any turd.” Still, you’ve got to admire Lawrence for digging deep for that silver lining. Her letter ends on a rallying cry: “Do not let this defeat you—let this enrage you! Let it motivate you! Let this be the fire you didn't have before. If you are an immigrant, if you are a person of color, if you are LGBTQ+, if you are a woman—don't be afraid, be loud!” Of course, that’s assuming that vocal, open opposition is an option under the Trump regime. But your optimism is cute, J. Law.