Let Kindness Rule The Day
Folks, we need to know how to win and lose, and how to graciously do so in either case, while respecting the law and the freedom of choice we are blessed to have in this great nation.
Obviously, there's a sea of all ages struggling to process Trump's win. And there's another sea of folks that are all too happy to gloat about the big, historic win. Our country is oil and water, and we're going to be shaken together whether we like it or not.
Let kindness rule the day.
If you didn't vote Trump, I'm sorry. Disappointment is never welcome. I don't know how you feel. If you're frightened, that's the last thing I want for you. And I can promise you this, no matter our political differences, if Trump tries something illegal or unconstitutional, like rounding up Muslims similar to what happened to the Japanese Americans during WWII, I'll proudly stand with you against it. If legal immigrants are harassed in the nation, I'll fight against that. If ICE squads storm America's streets in some Gestapo-styled cleanse, I'll speak out. Illegal immigration is a problem that must be addressed with both truth and grace. We are a nation of laws and compassion. It's not an either/or proposition.
I'm not in your shoes but I can at least try to relate to you, to some imperfect degree, by drawing from my own past. Years ago, my family moved from Colorado to Hawaii. My sister, a Korean American (adopted at age 3 months), for the first time found herself surrounded by people of all ethnicities, including folks from Korea and Japan and China and across the Pacific Basin. Hawaii is a wonderfully diverse melting pot. But our family encountered the unexpected. We were a white family with a little girl of color. My sister looked "local" but her middle-American upbringing stood out like a signal flare in a midnight sky. She was ostracized, and called names by her classmates. "Banana" means you look local on the outside but on the inside you're not one of us. I could share other injustices. There was that white family whose disgust over our "mixed" household was impossible to ignore. Their words hurt.
My parents told us to love and to let it go. We did so imperfectly.
I experienced great disappointment eight years ago. On most issues the President and I stood apart. His skin color was a non-issue. I wanted to know about the man. He's a good father, husband, and a great orator. At times I was deeply troubled over what he said and over what he might do. At times I feared for my country, my faith, and my family. For eight years I pounded into my own skull, as best I could, and my son's, that while we disagreed with the President on issues, we still respected the office and the man. (Even when in our eyes he wasn't acting worthy of it) And, we prayed for him, which at times was hard to do; in retrospect we didn't pray for him nearly enough.
For the record, I did vote Trump. Trump was not "my man" or my first, second, or eighth choice. He's said deplorable, indefensible things. I took him seriously on some policy issues but not literally on the stupid, ugly things he said. I do believe he was/is the better choice of the two viable candidates we were given. We could debate Hillary over Trump. Both are deeply flawed and both have said and done deplorable things. I'm just not interested in arguing over the prize for least worse sinner. I still have major reservations about Trump. He needs my prayers too.
Let's be honest. You already made up your mind over what you were willing to forgive or tolerate or overlook or pardon in your candidate, and so did I. Like President Obama said eight years ago, that's what elections are for. What matters now is how we move forward.
Civility and kindness must rule the day. The only alternative is hate. And neither one of us can afford that.