High school presidential elections: Salacious rumors emerge about candidates. Future pres’ makes promises they can’t keep, typically pertaining to lunch hour or candy machines. Homemade posters with cliche catchphrases adorn the hallways, and students are unable to avoid the race, no matter how far down they cast their eyes.
Before I step upon my soap box, I want to relay how difficult it was for me to decide to write this post. I have tried my best to avoid any topics related to politics. I’ve attempted to stay somewhat impersonal – although I know I reveal much within my stories – trying my best not to be pegged down to one side or the other of a given topic.
But my sanity will not allow me to remain silent on this topic any longer. Keeping my feelings of fear, confusion and outright disgust to myself is creating a black hole of anger inside my chest, and it is affecting my creative process.
(Now on soap box.)
I don’t want to pick a side. I don’t think I should have to pick a side. I shouldn’t have to be labeled as a liberal because I don’t agree with someone else’s opinion. I shouldn’t have to be called old fashioned because I think a different idea is absurd. In this world of constant connectivity that we live in, I am left gaping at the angry exchanges between complete strangers. I find myself wondering, “Where did all this hate come from?”
This country just witnessed a high school election. I tried my best to ignore it, but let’s face it, that’s not really possible unless you live off the grid. I am so sick of opening every news app and seeing more news about the same topic that has been “breaking news” for three days, and isn’t even relevant; for example: Which twitter handle will be used, OMG THE SUSPENSE. The media is obsessed with the reality show that is our new government, and I can’t stand it.
I am scared to even utter my opinion about immigrants and refugees, it has become a topic that can evoke Dr. Jekyll from the most unsuspecting acquaintances. Regardless of opinions and politics and economics and all the other crap we have to attach to every topic in this world, the fact that we’re talking about fellow human beings seems lost to some. I wish that everyone would take a moment to imagine their family being in immediate danger, and needing to pick up and leave the only home they’ve ever known. It is scary on all sides.
Compassion has become a word directly tied to being a liberal all of the sudden. So since I have always considered myself compassionate, does that make me a liberal? And do I have to accept he title of liberal so that the opposite can be justified in ignoring my objections? Or can I just keep being a fellow human being that doesn’t want to see others suffer or the planet implode? Why do we have to keep dividing on everything and proclaiming our stance and then fighting to the death?
(Off soap box.)
I am scared for what tomorrow will bring. I am struggling to feel hope for the future of this country, and our world in general. I worry what path we are taking and where it will lead when my daughter is old enough to witness the destination. All around the world so many horrible things are happening, and I feel helpless. So I will continue to do the one thing I can do: spread some love and compassion.