My Vote is for Us

I’m sure there will be studies on this election for years. Not just about the politics but the societal impact. The vitriol. The depression. The friendships strained or broken. Every day I notice shorter tempers, more sarcasm, more name-calling. Sadness.

I’m sad too. Not over the flawed people running nor the flawed platforms they represent. I’m sad about us. Where we’re going. Why we aren’t getting along. Why we aren’t sharing and growing.

No matter how important these very real issues are, we’re all paddling the boat together and sometimes it’s just not going to go the way we’d each like. I’ll never stop rowing, but not at the expense of being a good, positive, and friendly person.

I know there are people out there suffering silently, wishing they could ask their friends to be more civil, more open, but not knowing how to do so without joining the fray. To you, I hear you so loud it echoes in my ears. I know. I’m sorry.

Meanwhile, we see internet posts from people we care about saying they’ll hate or never forgive people who vote a certain way. Telling them to F off. Making fun of people. Telling them they are stupid while passionately posting, in many cases without having all the facts or understanding the complexities. It’s hard. It’s hard to see it, and I can’t imagine it feels so good to do it. Does it?

I won’t belabor the point further. I’ll just say – this year my vote is for us. The one I’ll say in public, anyway. Which means I care about you no matter how you’re voting. I care about you if you disagree with issues that are important to me. I care about you if you think I’m stupid or misguided. Or if you think I’m smart. I care either way.

The disagreements are not worth it. Squad is more important. And like it or not, we’re all in this together. Everyone. Please, take a breath. Listen – to each other.

However you’re feeling right now, I hope that you’ll smile. I hope that you’ll smile at someone. Say hello. It’s worth it.

Cheers – E, October 2016