I'm posting this here because, like with my splintered heart, I have that writer's need to get my words out, but I'm too proud, private or cowardly (take your pick) to post it in a more public forum.
I find it so discouraging and tiresome, the way we demonize others for the choices they make.
Every time I hop onto FB I see someone I know stating, essentially, "if you're supporting/voting for Candidate-X then you're a bad person and can't be my friend."
I have a number of issues with this.
The first is simply a matter of choice. People who engage in this behavior are no better than those whom attack others for religious beliefs. The bottom line? People can vote for whomever they want. That's sort of the point, right?
I didn't vote for president Obama.
Most of my family did.
Likely all of my academic friends did.
I didn't feel the need to disparage them for their choice.
I didn't threaten to leave the country when my candidate failed to win, or accuse Obama supporters of trying to ruin the country.
FYI I voted for Barr, the Libertarian candidate.
And I was heckled by family members as having wasted my vote. But here's the rub: it wasn't wasted. It was my vote. Sometimes we fight the fight, play the game, or run the race even though we have NO chance of winning. Partaking in the event, the effort, is the nobler part. Being a productive and involved member of a democracy (or more accurately, a democratic republic) is not a destination; it is a journey. And like with most journeys, there is no one path.
This brings me to my second point. All of you people whom I love, railing against the choices of others (the present favorite is Trump of course but it could be any of them), do you really think that the worst president out of this motley collection of career politicians will spell cataclysmic doom for our country?
He or she will not.
Because our country, for all of its flaws, is stronger than that.
Everyone is getting so irate and wound up over rhetoric and campaign promises.
What is it about election years that turn the most educated and savvy citizens into 12 year olds reading spiderwebs at a country fair?
Just because it's written down somewhere doesn't make it true, accurate, or even plausible.
And when it's something a politician is saying...on a presidential platform...my god, don't be so naive.
All of you folks who truly believe Trump (assuming he wins) is going to build a wall around this country and kick out all of the illegals and Muslims...you clearly have a poor grasp of both the powers of the president, and the way the government works.
Likewise, all of you folks who fear that Clinton (assuming she wins) is going to pass unilateral gun laws and send the FBI and Marshals to come and take your guns...you are similarly confused.
Sanders can promise to make (assuming he wins) all the wealthy folks in our country turn over half of their annual income to the Dept for Better Education and Shinier Unicorns...it doesn't mean it's going to happen.
By all means, continue to gobble up all the media bites, celebrity endorsements and condemnations.
Just maybe, every once in a while, pause for a moment, and consider that 4 years, 8 if you've got bad-ass writers on staff, or even 12 years and 5 months if you're FDR, is not really so long a time in the lifespan of our country.
Is a politician really worth more than your bond with friends and family?