Yes, we lost. We lost the election, and we as Americans fear a huge, long list of things we are about to lose as well. You can go to any website and click on just about any article to find a list of positively terrifying things that might happen starting in January.
I’m not insane. Hell, I’m not usually much of an optimist. My good days have me as a realist with a dash of pessimism. So I’m sincerely baffled by my own reaction to this shitshow. I’ve had a few raging moments, but in spending time online talking with people, I realize there is a real need for more positive and less negative. I’m giving it my best shot.
Cheeto Satan may be able to do some pretty serious damage, along with his Republican House and Senate. But there are many, many fundamentally wonderful things, incredible things, that bastard will never be able to affect.
First and foremost, we have each other. We Americans have rock solid ideals that bind us together; that’s something the GOP can’t even pretend to know anything about. We embrace our differences, respect minorities and encourage one another to boldly be who we are…unashamedly.
We have empathy. It separates us from them probably more than anything else. We fight for the child who needs lunch at school, the homeless veteran, the disabled woman without insurance. When we see a single dad struggling to feed his kids, we don’t just turn away; we feel his battle in our souls, and we vow to do something to help. Nobody can or will change that about us. It defines our very being.
We have morals. Not the faux morality of the religious right that changes based on convenience, but true morals developed from our conscience, that guide us in our decisions and how we view the world. How we treat others is a basic tenant, and it certainly separates us from the others. We watch them in horror, because those morals would never allow us to act in those ways. And they never will.
We have intelligence and information. We are the educated. That does not necessarily mean college, but that we choose to inform ourselves and educate ourselves about the issues. We are not the people who wait until the day before and go read one article and make a snap decision. We are not the people who believe anything we read on the internet. We are not the people who buy into what a politician says just because it’s what we want to hear. We research and educate ourselves and one another. We make informed decisions. We are open to changing our opinions based on new information. And we teach our children to do the same.
No matter what happens in the next few years, who we are will not change. In fact, this will likely just make us double down and become more and more like ourselves. There isn’t a politician or government agency that can take any of these things away from us.
We Americans are at our cores the same people we were yesterday, that we are today, that we will be tomorrow. We have each other, with our empathy, our morals, and our intelligence. Our greatest assets are our greatest weapons.