Man. What an absolutely shitty couple of weeks it’s been. Donald Trump winning the election was nothing short of a punch in the gut.
I’ve been able to sum up some of my emotions about the election in the following gifs.
Trump is going to be an absolute train wreck for this country. White supremacists and the KKK are applauding this victory and even planning parades. He’s even appointing racists and white nationalists to top positions in his White House and cabinet.
The biggest hit though, is all of the progress we’ve made in the last 8 years. Man, we have such a long way to go. But fuck. Healthcare reform. Rebounded economy. Marriage equality. Expanded LGBTQ rights and protections. All of those things, plus other incredibly important issues could be done away in an instant. And with the Republicans controlling the White House, Senate and House, they will likely fill quite a few Supreme Court seats, which will have a massive impact on our country for the next 30-40 years.
We’re in for a hard four years. And I believe it will only be four years. And I have to hope that in two years the House and Senate flip blue after Trump and his cronies start fucking everything up.
Long hard four years ahead of us.
Trump supporters, spokespeople, and even Trump himself, are threatening dissenting voices both in the media and people like you and me. If you are going to speak out, there are some things you should consider to protect yourself. We’ve seen the Russians get involved in the election, and there is no reason to believe that the hacking or attacks will stop.
Protecting Yourself Online
Here is a great guide on things a regular person like you or I can do to secure ourselves online. I’ve highlighted a few below that are incredibly important.
Passwords are a huge problem. Not enough people use strong passwords, and too many people reuse passwords on multiple sites. This is horrible. If a site is hacked, like LinkedIn was not too long ago, hackers can sell user name and passwords. Hackers may try to use those stolen logins to break into your email or social accounts. They did it during GamerGate, and they’ve done it during the campaign.
Two Factor Authentication
You may want to start blogging, posting to social media, or doing other online activities. If you do, you should definitely take some precautions to protect yourself.
Start with using two factor authentication on all of your accounts. It can be a little inconvenient at times, but the peace of mind more than makes up for it.
Here are some quick links to help you set up two factor authentication on some popular sites:
If you’re going to blog, or create a website consider using WhoIs protection. WhoIs is a look up service where anyone can see who owns a domain name. Not only your name, but your email address, home/business address, and phone number. All information that you need to provide when you purchase a domain name. WhoIs protection masks that personal information. It’s usually a couple of extra bucks when you purchase/renew a domain name every year. Definitely worth it.
If you’re hosting a website, consider moving it to a secure protocol (https:// over http://) SSL encrypts communications between the user and the server. Whatever data that is requested and served is encrypted at the server, and decrypted at the end user’s machine. SSL helps prevent hackers, and the government from eavesdropping on your communications. I think SSL will be standard in a few years. Major sites like Google, Facebook, Twitter all serve there content over SSL by default now. You can tell what sites are secure by looking for a lock or green text in the site address bar.
Piggybacking off of the last point, encryption is important. Privacy is so incredibly important, and should be defended unlike anything else. This is one of the few problems I’ve had with Obama during his terms, and I see it getting worse under Trump and Republican control. Messaging services like Apple’s iMessage is encrypted, and is getting stronger every year, locking out not only hackers, but also the government (which is a good thing).
However, cross platform texting, like iPhone to Android may not be secure or encrypted. If you’re worried about privacy, here’s a list of cross platform apps that will keep you safe.
I’m not sure what I’ll be doing next. I want to get involved, but I’m not sure how just yet.
In the short term, I’m sharing information. Any articles or stories I find, I’m sharing. I encourage everyone to do this. The more facts that we get out there to over power the made up news the better.
Another thing I am doing is donating to causes that are important to me. I’ve set up recurring monthly donations to the ACLU, Planned Parenthood, and the Human Rights Campaign. I’ll probably add more donations as time goes on, too.
I urge you to also donate to groups that are important to you if you can. They need us now more than ever. And we will definitely need them.
If you’re like me, you’re angry. You want to take action. Be vigilant. This is not normal. We can’t let hate rule us. We can’t let Trump and the right undo all of the progress we’ve made.
Not sure what to do next? Don’t worry, there’s HOLY FUCK. NOW WHAT?
Be careful out there.