My Election Reflection

I’ve been writing in my head and having trouble finding the words to say, to console, to offer hope instead of fear.

I could blame the election results on so many factors, but I’ll leave that to the political analysts. I could dream (and believe me I do) that I’ll wake up and the news will be different. That something happened while I slept to change the results and dispose of an unqualified President-elect, that so many scholars, both American and foreign warned about. I could wish something will be disclosed that disqualifies him from holding office. I sign petitions and make phone calls, knowing these efforts are probably in vain.

I had hoped that perhaps once elected, he’d put aside his hateful rhetoric. Yet by his appointments, he’s condoning attitudes and practices that threaten the core of our democracy.

I realize I live in a bubble of opinions; that half the country doesn’t think how I think. I wonder who their teachers were and what they learned in school. Where did they learn this blatant disregard for civil rights, freedom of speech, and outright racism and hatred?

I can’t change the results. So I have to stand up and join others to be vigilant, to not allow history to repeat itself, not allow our constitution to be dismantled, and not allow people to be treated badly. But, it is so hard. My children have asked where we’ll go as if we’re ready to leave. We’re not so ready to give up or give in.

Thank you, Dan Rather for your words.

He wrote:

“Now is a time when none of us can afford to remain seated or silent. We must all stand up to be counted.

History will demand to know which side were you on. This is not a question of politics or party or even policy. This is a question about the very fundamentals of our beautiful experiment in a pluralistic democracy ruled by law. “

I’ve been doing a lot of yoga and that seems to calm me a bit. The day after the election I visited an art museum and attended a dance performance in New York City; art is a balm for the soul. Throughout the entire campaign season, a la Dicken’s Madame Defarge, I knit while watching the debates, recording indelible history in the garments. I stopped into a local knitting store recently and the proprietor told me business had increased since the election. In times of stress, people want to be creative.

To quote from the musical Hamilton,  “History has its eyes on you.

It’s up to us.

As Dan Rather ends his essay:

“We are a great nation. We have survived deep challenges in our past. We can and will do so again. But we cannot be afraid to speak and act to ensure the future we want for our children and grandchildren.”

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About cyclingrandma

I was a journalist (Danbury News-Times, Ct), before becoming a teacher, and continue to write for professional journals. I have written several study guides for Penguin Books and write for Education Update, a newspaper based in New York City. (www.educationupdate.com). I’ve interviewed many authors, college presidents, and scientists. I wrote “The Kentucky Derby’s Forgotten Jockeys” for Smithsonian Magazine's website, www.smithsonian.com. (April, 2009). Two essays have been published in book anthologies; one for Wisdom of Our Mothers, (Familia Books) and the other in “College Search and Parent Rescue: Essay for Parents by Parents of College-Going Students.” (St. Martin’s Press). I was a middle school Language Arts teacher for more than 10 years and have just completed a five year grant position under No Child Left Behind in Newark, NJ public schools. I have three children, two daughters-in law, and six grandchildren. I'm an avid cyclist, knitter, cook, and reader. I love theater, museums, and yoga.
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19 Responses to My Election Reflection

  1. Oy It has been tense since the election and I sure hope we all gain some clarity on all this. One thing that is clear is that those grandchildren of yours are adorable.

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  2. jfrances40 says:

    We all have work to do now. No room for complacency. Perhaps this is the message. Or at least I am looking for messages of hope. Thanks for this, Lisa!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. My thoughts are with you Lisa. I’m not sure what happened there. I’m not sure that the people who voted for Trump are racists or haters or whatever. Somehow he tuned into what people were feeling and I think it may be an opportunity to examine the heart of the people. Don’t get me wrong, He scares me, but there is a reason people voted for him… what is that reason, I wonder? ❤
    Diana xo

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Ah to be a Canadian now! Lots of reasons I think, not just one and I worry that when he says the election was rigged, he rigged it for himself. His rhetoric, much of which he’s not saying now, spoke to people for lots for reasons. Hard to swallow that 1/2 the country believes the way some are sounding.

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  5. dana winkler says:

    🙏💗☪️ >

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  6. I too , living here in Canada, wonder what will happen. How will your country stand true to its values. HOw will democracy survive let alone thrive? I am so grateful for you and so many others Lisa who are speaking up — even if at this time you don’t know the next steps, you are speaking up saying that we will not give up on freedom of speech, human rights, democracy. Keep speaking up! <3.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Thank you Louise. Compared to your PM, we really have a disaster and so unpredictable. He said and did anything to get elected and is now softening some of his stands but his obvious business and family relationships are very worrying.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Thank you! Yes, my favorite holiday and so much to be grateful for despite the madness.

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  9. Marvelous post. Meira is some glamour girl. One good thing about the campaigns, get a lot of knitting done. Thank you for the Thanks giving rehearsal. The gand preformance was also good.

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  10. I keep wishing something unreal would happen and it would all go away, but it won’t. I have come to the realization that many voters do not stand for hate, but chose to ignore those risks (possibly believing he is all wind) in the hopes of real change. The system is very disappointing to so many, and Trump offered a move from traditional politics (which we might agree, is broken) to something new. While I abhor all he stands for, I am beginning to see that it isn’t black or white, when it comes to how people voted. That said…still waiting to wake up from this! I’m also standing up, and I have already got my tickets to DC for the Women’s March on Washington!

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  11. Margaret C says:

    This was stunning, demoralizing, horrifying. Selfishly, I have said our family will continue to live its life, a little less easily, we will get through it, and after a while someone else will be president. Sadly, other families will face a lot more hardship. And that’s leaving aside the cavalier treatment of the Constitution. : O
    I’m sorry to say I think the Democrats partly brought it on themselves (and us) by condescending to (or ignoring or talking past) working-class and “flyover” people, many of whom are in distress. The economy as a whole may be up, but many many people around the country are down or stagnant economically, and looking for change of some kind. In 2008 and 2012, “change” was optimistic and (mostly) presented as unifying. In 2016 the “change” candidate is a con and a bully. oy. And what ever happened to BHO’s 50-state strategy??

    best to all
    m

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Maybe it won’t be so bad. He just saved jobs by talking Carrier Air conditioning Company into staying in the US instead of relocating to Mexico…Let’s hope he will turn out to be better than we all think.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. We’ll see. Not one of his appointments holds out any hope for me.

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  14. Pingback: Pantone Green & A Giveaway | cyclingrandma

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