I am so sorry. Especially to the beautiful young people whom I know and don’t know, I am sorry. To my Muslim and Somali, Hmong and Black and Latina/Latino and Asian and LGBTQ students and friends, I am sorry. To my own children, I am sorry. This country and the world have been in hideous places before now –before the end of slavery, before the beginning of civil rights and women’s right to vote and women’s right to sovereignty over their bodies– but from here on out I am stepping it up. I vow to be as kind as I can, whenever I can. To speak up when I see someone being bullied. To call out the perpetrators when I see acts of racism and sexism. To protect the right to a safe and legal abortion for all the young women who, like me when I was a terrified and birth control-using teenager, make that agonizing decision. To listen, no matter the views of the person speaking, so that I can try to connect in even a tiny way, one human heart to another. To put one foot in front of the other for the next four years and for every year after that to make this world a better place.