Serenity. Now!

“It has been said that democracy is the worst form of government. Except for all the others.”

~ Winston Churchill

Never have I felt such a sense of excitement on election night. And I was a newspaper reporter on some momentous election nights back in the dark ages (early 90s)! I have followed the campaign from its beginning, watching all or parts of both parties primary debates, the presidential debates and the vice presidential debate.

I wanted to hear what the candidates had to say from their own mouths, and boy, did I! Unfortunately, coverage in general of the messy campaign was more about personality than policy, but it certainly was entertaining.

Ironically, my presidential choice has no chance of making a victory speech. I couldn’t stomach holding my nose so I gave thumbs up to a candidate I could vote for instead of against (I would mention more body parts, but we’ve probably heard about enough body parts in this campaign). In Illinois, it wasn’t a wasted vote since this state’s electoral college votes were already in Clinton’s back pocket (or, perhaps more appropriately, purse). Well, my vote was no more wasted in Illinois than every vote for Trump and every vote Clinton got beyond what she needed.

More importantly, I voted at all, and by all accounts, so did a lot of Americans. Heck, my grandmother (who’s still alive and probably watching election returns on a TV with closed captioning) didn’t even have the right to vote when she was born. Voting is a privilege, and exercising that right is a duty. So seeing a big voter turnout warms the heart of this political science major.

Casting a vote, however, is not the same as making a demand. We live in a democracy, and that means we all go along with the majority (or in any case, a plurality). Which is why I end this post with a prayer I think is appropriate, given that half of us are going to be disappointed with the election results.

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference.


4 responses to “Serenity. Now!

  1. Were it that simple. America’s vote has implications that go far beyond your borders. Here in Canada I think the overwhelming feeling is one of shock.

    • Len, I always appreciate your perspective. I’m in no position to defend a candidate for whom I didn’t vote. But I feel strongly neither candidate is as bad as their opponents portrayed them. Serenity, my friend.

  2. I love the way you ended this post – this is a democracy and quite bluntly, I think the people making terroristic threats are wackadoos. As a woman, I am grateful for the right to vote and was excited to see a woman presidential candidate for the Democratic party, but I believe no vote is better than an irresponsible or ill-informed vote. This post articulates it well:

    • Thanks for posting this piece. I did see this before Tuesday, and I appreciate his point. But in a modern democracy, everyone gets a vote, however “uninformed” and “irresponsible” they might be. Maybe that makes democracy the “worst form of government.” But it’s the best there is.

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