November 7, 2016 by cwiley34
Maybe I am in the minority here, but I believe our Republic will survive come Wednesday morning, no matter who wins the election. I just have that much faith in America.
Our Republic survived, not without present-day consequence, its original sins: our cruel treatment of Native Americans especially during colonization and westward expansion and our equally cruel treatment and enslavement of Africans and generations of their progeny who were as American as I am.
Our Republic survived Founders who literally and viscerally hated one another, using language that mimics in eerie echoes the barbs traded during this unending campaign.
Our Republic survived a brutal, bloody internal war between people who shared almost everything in common except a philosophy on government and a definition of what “all men” truly meant.
Our Republic survived presidential elections that went to the House of Representatives and those that added “hanging chads” to our lexicon.
Our Republic survived a crippling Great Depression, a numbing Great Recession, and about a half-dozen legitimate economic panics in the 19th century.
Our Republic survived a 20th century global conflict where the evil forces of totalitarianism and fascism threatened to drag the world — and us — toward the godless worldview of tyrants.
Our Republic survived deep fraternal schisms along every imaginable fault line: politics, war, race, religion, sex, the rights of minorities, immigration, and on and on.
Our Republic survived truly asinine, indefensible Supreme Court decisions like Dred Scott, Plessy, and Korematsu… and dozens of others with which well-intentioned, sober-minded people happen to disagree.
Our Republic survived the horrors of Pearl Harbor and 9/11, which actually showed us how strong and united we could be.
Our Republic survived repeatedly incompetent Congresses who have little grasp on their constitutional role and care far more about their own power.
Our Republic survived gerrymandered districts and politicians who chose their constituents.
And, quite relevant to today’s debate, our Republic survived presidents — not just candidates — who were unrepentant crooks, chronic cheats, serial philanderers, certifiable racists, ruthless megalomaniacs, draft dodgers, and petty nepotists, and even a few who, in retrospect, were wholly unqualified and unprepared to hold this high office.
So I grow weary when each camp asserts that the “future of our Republic” is at stake in this election. To be sure, a lot is at stake, but history shows us that our Republic is much more resilient than any single individual who serves as president. To think otherwise simultaneously ignores our history and falls victim to irrational cults of personality. One can believe someone is the fundamentally wrong choice to be president and believe that we will endure as a Nation. To do so, it seems to me, is wholly American, a patriotic act of optimism and faith in our Constitution.
I am tired of being accosted by dear friends on both sides, each telling me in equal force that I have to vote for X or Y because the future of our Nation hangs in the balance. These are the same people, again on both sides, who have done excruciating moral gymnastics to justify their own vote, even to assuage their own consciences, according to the doctrine of relative filth, i.e., weighing the sins of one against the sins of the other and determining one is “less bad” than the other.
Frankly, I wish so many of my friends who view this election as some apocalyptic battle would just step back and breath. The first step of surviving anything is to remain calm and conserve your oxygen… probably something all of us should do in this homestretch and in the days after the election.
Enough already. Vote for whom you wish without the hyperbole and without the faux moral superiority. Just vote. And let someone else do so in peace, too. Exercise your duty and vote, secure in the belief that we will carry on.
We will survive.