Monday, November 7, 2016

Country Unity ~ Is it Possible After this Election?

Created by Kim Kline, API

This election has been a divisive one.  
Our citizens have been polarized 
over the final two presidential candidates 
more than ever before.  
Tolerance is at an all time low.

Neighbors are battling neighbors.  
Conversations over the election, 
even among friends, are often turning ugly.

The example set by our two candidates deserves some of the blame.  They have often resorted to their own game playing, low blows, and inflammatory statements.

These elections have often been “more about show than substance.  Media attention has been rampant, but not about what is important.  Instead the focus has been on whatever outrageous statements the candidates make about our country and each other”, excerpt from “These Elections are Driving Me Crazy”.

While uncivil behavior by our candidates is certainly true, I am more concerned about what this election has done to us, our nation’s citizens.

There has been a level of mean spiritedness and immaturity between each candidate’s supporters that is unlike anything I have ever seen.  Instances of name calling and even physical violence are not uncommon.

Not to mention the inappropriate and simply contentious social media posts that have cluttered my Facebook and Twitter feeds.

People ranting not just on their own pages but on the pages of others.  Posts by users that call out or belittle those that have an opposing view to their own.  I have even seen people“unfriending” connections all because of what has been shared online. 

Where has this gotten us?

The number of those that refuse to respect, or at the least accept, that each of us have our own choices and our own beliefs has grown.  Many of us refuse to recognize that not everyone’s point of view will match our own.  

Instead of acknowledging that everyone has the right, and the duty, to vote their own conscience, there are those that believe their choice is the only “right” one.  

Even labels like “conservative” and “liberal”, Republican and Democrat, have taken on a new meaning.  Instead of simply being parts of the larger whole, to some of us they now serve to identify our enemies.  

In reality, I believe very few of us fall squarely within the parameters of any one of these labels.  Most likely, many of us would fall somewhere in between. 

Will this Election Only Serve to Divide Us More as a Nation?  “Tweet This”

Created by Benjamin O'Keefe

However, the biggest problem with all of this, poor behavior and labeling alike, is that it just serves as a way to divide us more.

And what happens after the election is over?  What then?

Are we to continue to live in a country 
where many of its citizens refuse to find a way 
to live and succeed as one?

Will we use childish “one up man-ship” 
to keep things stagnant within our government 
and let our civility and respect deteriorate?

Can’t we, instead, find a way to truly work together 
for the betterment of all?

Even if the election does not go the way you wanted, aren’t we still all US citizens?  

People need to realize that we are all much more alike than we are different.

Instead of embracing these similarities, many choose to focus on our differences instead.  This simply keeps the cycle of divisiveness going.

I believe……

We all want love, family and friends, and security.  We all have goals for ourselves and those we love, and we want success in achieving them. 

Most of us also want peace and believe in helping our fellow man.

I am not ready to throw in the towel.

I want a better world for myself, my children, my friends, and everyone else in this country.

I believe in the ideals the United States was founded on ~

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness” (Declaration of Independence).

This does not mean that in our pursuit to make our own lives happier and worthwhile, that we can deprive someone else of their rights.  There is no justification for it.

That does not mean we can't strive for change or fight injustice.  

I believe in peaceful protest.  It is our right and duty to stand in support of what we believe in ~ especially if that stand is made in defense of our fellow human beings.  Protest as a catalyst for change is part of what makes this country great.

But when those protests escalate to hurled insults, disgusting diatribes, and acts of violence, then ……..  

I scream STOP!!!!

Through our words and actions, we must present a united front in support of a caring and respectful nation. 

And the best way to accomplish this is to Practice Empathy!

When we are empathetic, we take the time to put ourselves in someone else’s shoes.  We consider their feelings and care about them as people.  We want them to be happy and fulfilled.

This is the goal to which we should all strive. 

Politics, and especially this election, cannot and should not deter from that.

Belittling, name calling, and physical violence are never the answer.

Real strength comes from unity.  
And what does the “United” States 
really stand for if not that!  

Even if we continue to believe in and want different things, that shouldn’t mean we can’t live and work together peacefully and successfully.

Created by Kim Kline, API

I believe in these words and will work daily 
to honor them.

Indeed, it is the only way we will continue to grow, strengthen, and succeed as a nation.

It is time to move beyond the divisiveness this election has created once and for all.

Are you ready?

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