Wow, what a week. We all knew this would be a landmark election, no matter who won. This one was was more intense than we have seen because there are such big issues at stake for our country. On the surface the candidates mostly stayed on task and tried to focus on issues. Every so often their campaigns got off track and attacked the wrong topic. Attacks on the other candidate pretty much back fired as we demanded to know who could get us back on track.
But there was a whole other side to the campaigns that took place on the Internet, spreading fear and hate. Its effects will linger long after we are into the new administration's term.
My granddaughter came home from school on Wednesday crying. She had really gotten into the election even though she is only eight. Her obsession went well beyond my husbands and my role. She had even talked about ways she could try and fool the election officials so she could go vote for Obama.
Anyway, since I'm sure she was outspoken at school about her choices, several kids came up to her on Wednesday to tell her that we we all going to die by January now that her choice was in the White House. She was also told that Obama was taking all the guns away from the military.
It is easier for me to talk about mending fences and accepting the choices of the voters as the candidate I supported won. But in reality each of us at some point supports the losing side and that is part of our democratic process.
When I was younger and a bit more radical left leaning, I read an article written right before President Reagan was elected. It predicted the demise of our country if he became president. The arguments they made were compelling and I was truly scared when the election was over.
Reality was that that did not happen and my life continued on its course. That experience was a course changing moment in my views of the political picture. I still lean left, but mainly just left of center. I do not agree with either side as they head to far one way or another. I did not like many policies of this past administration and I will not agree with all of the next one.
But we truly do have to set aside our fear and partisan bickering to get this country on track. It is alright for us to differ in the ways this should happen, I think the right track is in the middle.
We need a country that has rich and powerful people. The rich need to invest in our economy and not just look to become richer.
We need a solid and prosperous middle class. They need to work, invest and play and gain with economic stability. They should not be looked at to support the classes above and below them.
We also need to allow those who have fallen to the bottom the ability to climb back out and live in dignity. We need to acknowledge that because of many factors there will be some of our country that support to survive.
Not one of these groups are less important to the make up of our country than another. The right leaders will find a way to address the issues of each group.
My hope is that we can find a way to accept the next four years. Our country is at the edge of turning around or continuing to fall apart. Both candidates faced the same challenges and no matter what choice we made, we now need to band together to fix things.