I love the Beatles. Always have, always will. Come together is one of the greatest songs ever.
But I don’t like politics. And according to my friends, since I didn’t vote, technically I have abdicated my right to complain about the situation America is in.
They may be right, they may be wrong. Who knows. This will likely be the only post I ever write that is somewhat political in nature and I’m not really sorry for it.
I didn’t vote for a number of reasons, one of which is that while it is my right to vote, I also believe it is equally my right to not vote. Another reason why I didn’t vote is because I couldn’t bring myself to vote for either candidate. To my eyes, both candidates were the willing and also unwilling figureheads of a lot of hate and vitriol. I was really appalled at it all and decided that instead of being forced to pick one side of hate and vitriol over another, I would simply not pick. Yes, I could have picked the Libertarian party. But apparently I was not alone in not voting. Lowest voter turn out in 20 years. That’s 5 elections. That’s a lot of time.
I am just tired of the finger pointing and the typecasting and the rhetoric. But is my silence just silent finger pointing? I suppose one could look at it that way if they wanted to. But you have to want to. I don’t. I’m just silent because I’m tired of the noise. Judge me if you want. And, I’m sure there will be plenty who do. It’s easy to judge isn’t it? Its easy to categorize and then categorically dismiss people. I appreciate what Colbert said about us liking the taste of the poison. I find that apropos. We’ve all been a victim of judgement at some point in our lives, some more than others. And when one has been a victim of that it makes that person want to return in kind. Eye for an eye after all, right?
Or does it have to be? Look, I’m not saying that I consistently demonstrate it. I can feel the struggle within me to give the finger to the kid who was walking across the street that gave me the finger first. And in that instance, I gave into my want for revenge. I just wanted to get him back somehow for the injustice he supposedly caused me. I wanted to turn around and harass him all the way home. Make him feel fear. But what does that do? What did he really do after all? Gave me the finger. So what? What does that matter? It matters because I feel weak by not defending myself.
What ever happened to grace, forgiveness, and trust?
I will be a willing participant in constructive conversations. I will be willing to offer the grace to listen to people’s opinions that I find offensive and hope that same grace is offered back. I don’t know where things went wrong, but I suspect it really doesn’t matter. In the end, it’s the future we have to come together on, not the past.
This may be a fool’s hope, but I really do hope we start to learn to show each other love and grace. And I’m willing to start.