I’m going to go out of my comfort zone here and post something ‘political’ for once. However, I don’t plan on trying to convince you to favour anyone, or anything in particular – I’m going to try and remain unbiased, and attempt not to say anything too condemning.
I’m a bit exasperated at some of things I’ve been seeing on social media. If you voted in an election, then you’ve demonstrated your belief in the democratic process – and regardless of the result, you should respect that. I don’t just mean the American election, but even as far back as to previous elections. There will be lines drawn and no matter what, someone will not like the result.
If your candidate had won, then those opposing would be reacting similarly. The system was put in place by the people, and is enforced by a government responsible to its people – change needs to occur within.
There’s a fine line between opinion and hypocrisy. You’re allowed to be sad, disappointed, outraged, mad, happy, overjoyed, etcetera. You’re allowed to express your thoughts and opinions – but the moment you chose to vote was the moment you placed your trust in a democratic process.
In regards to this particular election, the people of America chose. The people of America voted for whom they wanted, and the country was divided. Yet, it was still an election, where people had the opportunity to voice their opinion.
If you voted, then I commend you. If you chose not to vote, or could not, but expressed interest and concern, I commend you. Even if you are neither American nor particularly in favour of democracy and don’t care, I acknowledge you.
We are all people; do not let something like an election to divide us. Rather than choosing to complain about the result, perhaps, campaigning to amend the process should be your primary focus from now on. I’ve read people saying how “This election is different! It matters more!” – and yes, it is important, yet so is the next; regardless of the nuances and intricacies of the candidates’ platforms, and the controversies surrounding them.
I’ll say this – did people not react to Obama in similar ways as people are to Trump? I’ll also point to a bit of history: Abraham Lincoln won the election, yet the southern states which eventually would secede to become the Confederacy treated him as some are treating Trump – it’s all a matter of perspective (interesting fact: since the inauguration was held much later on, by the time Lincoln was actually inaugurated, he had the Confederacy to deal with; this is in part, why inaugurations are now on January 20 as a set date).
You cannot discredit another person’s perspective no matter how misguided or uninformed it is, for doing so is denying their humanity, or value as a human being. You cannot discredit someone for their political view – you can dislike, harbour hate towards, or ignore them, but it’s important to distance yourself and take in the big picture that can be observed in this.
Fact: One party won the electoral college, while the other won the popular vote.
If you think a system like this isn’t fair, or perhaps even as far back to the primaries, the super-delegates, or even a two-party system isn’t the best, then focus on that. If you think that perhaps, even these democratic institutions and processes are rigged, riddled with incompetence or unreflective of the people they’re supposed to represent, and then do something about it instead of challenging a system with no intention to take any meaningful action. The Electoral College was set by the founding fathers to not be entirely democratic – citizens of America, you are voting for the members of the Electoral College who will then vote for your president. This system is unlike Canada, who’s Prime Minister is selected in regards to the number of MPs that voters elect. This system is unlike France, where each eligible voters’ ballot counts directly toward who gets to be President.
Did you ever wonder why the Presidential Candidates rarely visit certain states? Why certain states have historically always been a ‘red’ or ‘blue’ state?
And yet regardless of all this, what you have now is a country divided. Perhaps you are disappointed in the policies, plans, or actions of the candidates – and yes, they are important. Nonetheless, fix the problem amongst yourselves. Your friends or family may support a party opposing your views, but at the end of the day, the current democratic system allows for ways for the citizen to challenge it – to argue how effective it is, is moot. At the end of the day, it is not the end of the world – perhaps, it may be a beginning of a dark period – but would the opposing side not say the same if the other had won?
You have been given the tools to fix any problem, so work together to make a better system instead of fighting amongst each other.