Thursday, November 10, 2016

Feeling Blue and Seeing Red? Me Too.

I'm usually quiet on political matters, partly because I don't debate well, but largely because of my political ignorance.

With this election, I couldn't play that card. I am neither Republican nor Democrat. So, with an open mind, I watched all the debates, listened painstakingly to each candidate, and did my research. 

They both came up short for me. So what was my reason for keeping quiet?

Voting is a deeply personal choice. Who we choose is a reflection of what we believe--our core values, our moral compass and what seems right to us based on those things. Hopefully, one of the candidates validates that.

I decided to break my silence because I'm angry. And I'm grieving too. But not for the same reasons most people are.

I went reluctantly to the polls. I would have preferred not to vote at all. I seriously considered it, then changed my mind. I live in a blue state, so it really doesn't matter anyway. 

I won't go into the reasons why I voted the way I did, but suffice it to say that I did not vote for the person running.

I voted for Trump. I am neither a White-Supremist nor a racist. But based on the angry posts I've seen on Facebook, it's been implied that I am both...and worse. Homophobic. Islamophobic. Sexist. Uneducated. 

I don't like the man. I didn't like the woman either. Making a choice wasn't easy for me.

For the record, I never liked Obama either. I thought he was a great speaker, but a bad president. But I wasn't allowed to say that, because I was labeled a racist. Except that my reasons had nothing to do with the color of his skin. 

I understand that half the country is disillusioned, scared, and deeply upset because their candidate didn't win. I get it. You asked me to try to understand your grief. But what about mine? 

I've been belittled by Trump-haters. I've been bullied into feeling ashamed or guilty for not voting for Clinton. I've sat in rooms where people just assume that I support her. And I'm tired of being quiet and taking it. I don't see a difference between the venomous anti-Trump posts and the bully you claim Trump to be. Belittling and bullying take many forms. I may not be a minority, but I can still feel belittled and bullied. And I have. I still have feelings. And mine matter as much as yours.

Let's imagine a different scenario:
Secretary Clinton has just won the race. The next day on Facebook, all her fans are rejoicing, posting comments about how great our country is, how wonderful she is, and how they knew, they just knew that the people would vote for the "right" things, the right candidate. But still, half the country is disillusioned, scared, and upset because the other candidate didn't win. 

My guess is that the Trump supporters' posts would say that the election was rigged, and Clinton's supporters would say, "Oh, get over it. She won. Accept it. Move on."

But I'm not allowed to say that to those who are grieving their loss right now. And truthfully, I wouldn't. I do care. 

But I ask you this: Would you have the same compassion for those of us who voted differently from you that you deeply desire us to have for you now? Maybe some would. But sadly, I really believe that most people would be too overjoyed to care about the rest of us. Because that despicable man didn't get in, and that alone is cause for celebration. You'd still be a Trump-hater.

As long as we still live in America, we are all entitled to vote as we choose. None of us should feel bullied or belittled because we voted a certain way. I didn't insult you for voting your conscience. Don't insult me for voting mine.

This is why I'm seeing red and feeling blue. This is why I'm grieving. This is why I'm angry. But no one sees that. They only see the misguided woman who didn't vote for a woman. They only see a traitor who voted for an idiotic bigot.

There is a story in the Bible about a man named Balaam, a man who wouldn't listen to God, so God spoke to Balaam through his donkey.

The way I look at it, God spoke through an ass once. If He did it once, He can use an ass again.




If Secretary Clinton can move on, if President Obama wishes President-Elect Donald Trump well, and promises to help him make a smooth transition, then ought we not do the same? Can we allow each other to grieve in our own way without casting stones and making assumptions and judgments?

Can we PLEASE stop the hate?

Don't wait for someone else to make it stop. 
Make it personal. 
I'll go first.

Blessings Along the Path,
Mare

PS: Feel free to attack me, but don't expect me to engage. Since I've shared my feelings, I really don't feel the need to defend them any further. Thank you for respecting me and my blog.




5 comments:

  1. Awesome post, Mary! I have felt the same way about the bullying and the reaction of half of the country that lost - incomprehensible!!! My heart goes out to them. They have felt great loss. But to hate anyone who is on the "opposite" side is so sad!! I have been reading several writings on this subject, so we are not the only ones. Actually, I found the opinion of a certain celebrity very interesting, after responding to a message sent to him...Here is his Facebook response(with a bit of humor in it) - https://www.facebook.com/TheRealMikeRowe/photos/a.151342491542569.29994.116999698310182/1330853343591472/?type=3&theater

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    1. Ann, thank you so much for your encouraging words. I confess, I don't know who Mike Rowe is, but I thought he had a lot of fantastic words to say. I didn't get the cat licking thing...I usually have a,warped sense of humor, but I missed that one.

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  2. I'm an Aussie and so I am not affected by what has been going on in the US. I can understand the difficulty of who to vote for. In Australia voting is compulsary so we have to vote. I try to be lead by God as to who to vote for. We rely on the news reports and what we read and find out from sources as to make an informed decision. And ask the Lord "who"? If I had been a US citizen I would have voted for Trump. Your post was balanced and something to chew over. And you said it very well.

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    1. Wow, I didn't know that it was compulsory to vote in Australia! I wonder how the elections would turn out in the US if every citizen voted. Thanks for your kind words.

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  3. Excellent post! Thank you for eloquently writing what I haven't been able to put to words. Well done!

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