By the time this article gets published on my blog, it will be four days past election day. As I write this, it’s exactly two days prior to that day, a day I’ve come to see holds paramount to all other interests for many in this country.
Quite honestly, this whole election has brought a stress upon my life that has made me feel so very distant from the vast majority, especially those closest to me. Case in point, a friend of mine recently got very angry with me when I said I hadn’t cast my ballot yet and didn’t even know if I wanted to. In the heat of that moment, they expressed some choice words and said they might have to re-evaluate being my friend if I didn’t do my civic duty. It was an extremely disheartening conversation and one that truly saddened me.
The idea of losing any friend based upon a stance I may or may not take on voting seems insane. But I often feel lately we’re living in insane times and acting in insane ways towards each other. It’s precisely why I feel like there will be no real winner in this election because at the core of all this insanity are people believing the problem is out there in our political leadership, when it’s in us, in the way we treat each other, like considering not being a friend if a person doesn’t vote.
Whether I voted or didn’t shouldn’t matter. What should matter is the amount of anger that seems to be building in so many for even the slightest of things like with my friend’s stance on voting. What good does getting angry do? Anger only begets anger and an angry individual will only remain angry long after this election is over, even if their candidate was elected, as it merely will be transferred onto something else to be angry at. And let’s not forget that all it takes to begin a war is for two individuals to be on opposing sides of some view and become seriously angry about it.
While I may be angry at some things in my life, chiefly my health, one thing I can say for sure that I haven’t been angry at or complained about during the majority of the past four years is the state of our country. That’s not because I’ve been in favor of this political administration, because, on the contrary, I haven’t, but nor have I really never been in favor of any political administration since I became an adult either. Honestly, I’ve just chosen to always focus my energy on other things that I feel more called to place my energy in, like treating those around me with unconditional love and respect, no matter what they stand for. In my humble opinion, that takes a lot more work than angrily lashing out at the current political administration.
My core goal in life has become one of inclusion, not exclusion, even when it may bruise my ego in doing so. That’s why for me, whether someone votes or doesn’t, won’t change my opinion of them. This is no different from the neutral stances I take with political affiliation, religion, sexuality, race, and countless other things that cause so many others to hate one another versus love one another these days. That hatred is the very thing that’s causing our country to be at the very tipping point it’s at right now and notably why people are worrying about things like civil war and mass violence.
So, what happens in the next four years, I don’t know. But truly, I want you all to know that I plan on doing my part to love each of you through it all, NO MATTER WHAT! Whether you voted or didn’t, whether you’re in favor of who gets elected or doesn’t, or whether you think of me as some 60’s hippie love child or someone you think buries his head in the sand, I chose to love and accept you, just as you are. I only hope you’ll do the same with me, because if we ever want to see peace achieved in our country, and the world for that matter, it will only come by accepting each other for our differences, rather than trying to create a society that’s only filled with what our mind thinks it should be filled with.
Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson