Two Way Street–Even If We Unite
Well, it’s over. Election day has come and gone. For a year and half (or more) America has been fed shit, and now we suddenly don’t like the taste.
I knew there was something up when I was walking into my polling place and tears filled my eyes. I knew then that the barometer was wrong and that a despicable man would be elected president. I watched one brave Muslim man politely and respectfully hand out Democratic sample ballots at my polling place. He greeted them with a pleasant good morning and asked if they would like a ballot. I knew who I was voting for but I took the ballot anyway. I also gave this brave man a hug. Of course, I thought later that my act may have been a “sin” in his religion, but he gave me a hug back–a very cautious one–which was good. We are strangers, after all, but I had to show him some love. I also know that he received many disparaging comments from some people with hate in their heart. I can’t even imagine what is going through his head right now.
The day after the election, I had to regroup. I had to have some pampering, so I decided a pedi and mani was in order. My Vietnamese nail tech was frightened. I could see it in her eyes. She has children that she is fearing for as well. She patted my leg and hesitated. I tilted my head and smiled.
“What do you want to know?” I asked.
She whispered her question, “Who did you vote for?”
“Not the winner,” I responded.
She smiled. This woman likes me. She actually adores me and I’m not bragging. I tip her twenty percent when she pampers me. The majority of people barely tip her at all. She is treated rudely by many. I’ve seen it. She is divorced and is barely making ends meet. I treat her with respect, because she is a human being who is providing a service I choose to have done. She isn’t paid well and she doesn’t have medical insurance. I choose to care for her. I treat her with kindness and I receive kindness in return.
A few minutes later she looked at me and said, “I don’t understand what happened.” How do you explain this to someone who fled her country for freedom. Who has sacrificed everything to give her children a better chance. She heard the hate, again. How do you comfort someone when I have not walked in her shoes? I tried to explain that Trump won the electoral college vote and Hillary won the popular vote. I tried to tell her what that means so it might provide her some ounce of hope in the people of the country she escaped to–as honestly as I could. It really doesn’t mean anything. It doesn’t change the outcome, but it does say that there were slightly more people who wanted Hillary–who believe that love trumps hate. She turned to her Vietnamese sister and in her native language told her sister what I had just told her. How do I know? I heard the name Hillary and the words popular vote. I smiled at the thought that their language had no word for popular vote. Very telling–isn’t it?
Now it is the second day after the election and there is this big, huge club being wielded. It is the “We Must Unite” club. Yeah, well, no. For as far back as I can remember, the two candidates for president have exit stage left on election night urging the country to unite, while doing nothing to unite us. You are suppose to lead–remember?
I won’t go all the way back in history, but I will go back these last eight years. Unity was called for after each election. The people have spoken, they said, and we received the most obstructionist Congress, who accomplished very little. Dodd-Frank was the last, most significant legislation passed by Congress. A vacancy on the Supreme Court for well over a year and you all have the nerve to ask us to unite? You have the nerve to tell the Democrats to unite. Really?
News flash–it isn’t going to happen. It hasn’t happened in my lifetime. What in the world makes you think that this nation is going to unite when the most polarizing, despicable, criminal candidate was elected. (And Hillary would have caused just as much division–maybe more–because those factions who despise her where already riled up and obstructing.) All of the sudden we should hold hands and sing kumbaya because the “mighty” have deemed it so. Let me know how that works for you.
There is a pecking order in this country. We all know what that is. We all thought we were making progress against it. But then the barn door was opened and it was okay again to be offensive, act superior, be demeaning, grab some pussy, and just be openly nasty to other living things. You opened Pandora’s box and now you are trying to close it again. Good luck with that.
And just for the record, uniting doesn’t mean that I agree and go quietly into the dark night. (Sorry for the Independence Day reference–it’s been in my head a lot.) Uniting doesn’t mean that I have to agree with the actions that are going to be taken by this new order administration. Uniting does not mean that we–or I should say our representatives-meet the pendulum as far right as possible.
Uniting is a two way street. One lane is proposed legislation. The other lane is negotiation. Uniting is standing toe to toe in the middle of the street and discussing what is good for ALL the people–not the top of the pecking order.
You want us to unite? Put away the club. Put away the rhetoric. Recognize that the pecking order still exists. Get over your fear and talk. Seek to understand. Learn from the bottom up and represent the people, not the corporations. Educate yourselves, and then educate your representatives. Be respectfully vocal and supportive of good, not evil. We need to overcome again and again. And don’t think for one minute you have grabbed me by the pussy. I have a knee and I’m not afraid to use it.
This isn’t over. This is just beginning.