Footnote: No, this is not the end of the comic. I will return to work.

Here’s the thing: I can’t pretend this didn’t happen. I can’t pretend hate crimes are something that “just happens” after an election. (Especially when those crimes come from the “winning” side.) I can’t pretend that a president-elect isn’t appointing his friends to plush government positions. I can’t pretend to ignore the symbolism that sleeping in the White House isn’t good enough for him.

I can’t pretend that any of this is NORMAL. It’s not. It isn’t acceptable, either. Nothing about this can be allowed to become either normal OR acceptable.

If I’m wrong and everything turns out just fine, then count me among the surprised. But I have seen nothing before, during, or after this election that gives me any such reason for optimism. Trump may not destroy the world, but even if he doesn’t, he won’t stop the next asshole-in-chief from taking it further. Whether that comes in eight years or eighty is anyone’s guess.

Soon, I will return to work. I will continue drawing comics with strong female protagonists (and antagonists), Jewish catgirl vampires, lesbian lion-taur princesses, and everything else you’ve come to enjoy. But I’m not about to pretend that this won’t leave a mark.

All of you, keep reading. No matter who you voted for, or didn’t vote for. I refuse to teach only those who’ve already learned the lesson. Mistake that decision for weakness at your own peril.

Oh, and do take notes. This will not only be on the final exam; it will also arrive sooner than you expect.