“To test a man’s character, give him power” is a quote ringing in many of our hearts. The election of 2016 was a difficult one for me. The candidates challenged what I believed before, what I believe today, and what I should believe tomorrow. Watching Trump’s victory speech and Hillary’s concession speech challenged me yet again. Why couldn’t they have talked to us that way during the campaign? What a crazy 24 hours.
I know many of us stood strongly against one or both candidates throughout this election, and the debates only cemented the nastiness of their campaigns. I couldn’t watch the debates. I watched 10 minutes of the first debate and turned it off. I felt like I was watching two crass toddlers fighting, and it wasn’t valuable to my time. During the other debates I watched Twitter briefly and knew I wasn’t missing anything by tuning out. Today Twitter taught me the same. So much hatred is written by people on social media sites. The commercials and campaigns are over – let’s end the hatred too.
I understand the sentiments of #notmypresident. I understand because I never voted for Obama and I remember thinking that very thing the second time he was elected. I felt he divided more than he brought people together, and I did not see his policies working for mine or my children’s future. He was elected twice so obviously I am the minority in my thinking. At the same time, the world went the opposite direction yesterday. Not only with who they elected for president, but for the seats in the house and senate as well. It made me laugh.
Many Americans were tired of George Bush after 8 years, and his approval rating was super low in the end. In response to this sentiment Americans did the same thing when Obama was elected. Not only was a democrat elected, but power was added to the democratic hold in the house and senate – but then power in the house and senate changed after 4 years as many were getting restless with Washington DC. Now we are 8 years later, and we are once again changing direction to the extreme again. Although the power is newer for the Republicans -they have not held this kind of power in many years. This brings me to the first sentence of this article: To test a man’s character, give him power.
Power is a deceiving feeling. Many people in power over-play their hand, and ignorance and ego take over any positives that could have been possible. Power often fails to unite people. I fear this happening with Republicans. I would like nothing more than to be wrong about this fear, but time will tell.
We do not have the benefit of a glimpse of the future before our choice is made. We don’t know what Hillary’s presidency would turn out like, and we didn’t know Trump’s. Instead we had to have faith in the candidate we voted for. Faith believes in things hoped for and not seen. What will we see?
I understand emotions are raw. Mine have been raw for the past year. I implore all of us to stand strong, but kind too, in this next chapter of uncertainty. I don’t know the future, and stressing about it only takes away from my life today, and I might not get tomorrow. So, stay kind even when people are not kind to you. Your heart will live longer and your mind will be clearer. We enjoyed or survived 8 years of Obama. We can all survive or even enjoy 4 years of Trump. Maybe good will come? Maybe bad will come? But we all have the power to make today and everyday positive inside ourselves and toward each other.
I am thankful to be an American. I am thankful to God for another breath to take and another day to live. I am thankful for my home, family, animals, friends, job and more. I have been given too many blessings from God in my life to let the uncertainty of tomorrow diminish my true blessings today. Love’s power beats hate any day. And even better – the commercials are finally over.
Be kind to each other. Fighting won’t change anything anyway. Shannon Sharpe reminded people of that very truth today – the only positive I saw on Twitter this morning.