I don't usually talk politics. I am not a person who can usually back up my opinions, I'm bad at debating, I tend to go with my gut rather than solid fact, which is a bad thing and I'll admit that. Perhaps because of that, I tend to treat politics like I treat religion; it's a personal thing, and I don't discuss it with the population at large. I don't put bumper stickers on my car, after all, do I think I'll convert someone with a bumper sticker? Am I bragging that I'm in the cool club? I just can't convince myself that it serves a purpose.
Having said that, I've been tempted to proclaim this time around. I've only been of age to vote for 11 years. In those 11 years, there have been three presidential elections, and I have voted in each. Though I consider myself a moderate (I lean conservative on a big social issue or two) I have voted Democrat in each. Each time, "my guy" lost the election, and so the country has gone.
I was trying to figure out last night a little after 10pm why I was suddenly so emotional. And it struck me: this time around, not only did "my guy" win the presidency, but I actually believe in him, and honestly like him. The last elections? I was more voting against the other candidate, which is not a good position to be in. It doesn't really make for a satisfying vote, or a vote you can really feel good about.
And I'm not saying that the president elect can do no wrong. I can currently site several issues where I disagree with his actions or his views. But like with religion, I'm content with that, because like in religion, I know that unless I start my own campaign/church, I will never find one I agree with 100% of the time. So that's okay.
And as I said in the comments in another journal, this time around, there would have been no wrong for me. I liked both this year's major party nominees better than either nominee in the last election. Both the concession speech given last night and the acceptance speech had me a little misty, and I have a lot of respect for both men.
I bought a paper on my way in to work this morning, because I think today is that special. I plan on putting it with my daughter's things to pass on to her when she's older, and I hope that the significance of today doesn't fade with time.
I hope that those people who were not convinced by the new president elect can come to accept him, if not support him. I hope that those people who still hold onto erroneous beliefs in regards to his intent, his background, his ethnicity or whathaveyou, can finally be convinced of his reality. I'm afraid for his future, and our future, if that doesn't happen. There has been some fearful talk of the "inevitable assassination attempts" that will be made, which frightens me more than another eight years of the current administration would. I cannot fathom the extremism that would prompt such an atrocity, and I pray that it doesn't happen. The state of our nation will not change for the better overnight, but I'm afraid such an act would change us for the worse in an instant.
But for today, for this moment, I am elated. I can't help but be optimistic, and it's a feeling I haven't held securely in far too long. And even if your vote was not for the candidate who carried this election, I hope you will share in my optimism, because today is different, and better, than yesterday. And each tomorrow will be better than today.