A petition to stop the Anti-Trump protesting popped up on my FB news feed last week. I was taken back a bit since I’d heard rumors that FB had started grooming people’s news feeds so they got more of the types of posts they were likely to “like” and fewer of the ones they wouldn’t. Then I noticed the names of the people who “liked” the article. Three people I knew from where I used to worship. I read the article. The comments alone made my heart sick. Most blamed “liberals” for everything wrong in our country. The rest ordered those who hadn’t voted for Trump to “get over it!”
Well, I’m not going to get over it, at least not any time soon. Nor, I suspect, will you.
Call me liberal, I prefer progressive but liberal doesn’t offend me. Since liberals have been a part of every good thing that happened in this country. Sure their party affiliation changed, like when Lincoln and Teddy Roosevelt were elected. But, their politics moved the country forward while striving to make all her citizens safe, equal, and free.
Call me divisive if it helps you sleep at night. But let me tell you something about division. When you blame those who shine the light on evil by suggesting the light created the evil, you have deceived yourself. Light only revealed what already existed. Let me repeat that: light only reveals what already exists. And, the light must continue to expose evil, so the marginalized and the falsely accused can instead be welcomed at the table. Hate, due to racism, sexism, xenophobia, homophobia’ or whatever other fear an oppressor uses to see someone as less than, must be exposed.
So in this instance, I hope am divisive. A divide should exist between those whose words and behavior harm and hate, and those who claim to follow Christ, who believe in equality, or who think freedom and justice are values worthy of a fight. I want a clear distinction to exist between those two groups of ideas because the minute we let even a little racism, or sexism, or xenophobia, or homophobia creep in, we have lost our right to claim support of or allegiance to the principles of equality, freedom, and justice. The second we give in to our fears, our insecurities, our ego, or our greed and begin to think of, talk of, or treat any “other” as less valuable, less important, or less worthy than ourselves, we are no longer following Christ. Period.
So go ahead, tell me to “get over it”, but understand this. My answer is NO. I will NOT normalize evil by playing nice. I will NOT spare your sensibilities by keeping my mouth closed. I will NOT act as if Donald Trump’s words and behavior to date have been normal, are presidential, or should be followed. He has shown himself to be self consumed and dangerous. He has disclosed his disregard for any authority above himself. He has revealed his distain for others. He has demonstrated his ignorance of or complete lack of concern for the Constitution and its roll in protecting the citizenry. You can bet what little good may come from anything he puts forth is an unintentional byproduct of some greater benefit to himself. I do not believe it is hyperbole. By electing Donald Trump we have opened Pandora’s box.
So instead of getting over it, I plan to wake up. I plan to get more involved in the political process than I have ever been. I plan to be vocal about what I know to be good and right and decent about America. I plan to link arms with my friends and make new friends with whom to link arms. Ignorance and fear have made their choice. What is left to be seen is what good may prevail and who will stand up.