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Column: Live and let live in politics

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Veronica Morley

Veronica Morley

Veronica Morley, Reporter

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This election season was definitely one of the craziest seasons we’ve ever had. There is always some controversy and debate among Facebook friends who support opposing candidates. However, usually after the election passes everyone makes up and moves on. It seems, though, that may not be the case this year.

I’ve heard time and time again. This year people became incredibly angry over a friend supporting Trump or Clinton. The arguments were all the same, “How can you support a sexist, racist, bigot like Trump?” or, “Why would you want a criminal and liar like Hillary running our country?” The rants on Facebook that I came across were probably the angriest and most defensive debates I’ve seen over any issue. People even started unfriending anyone who disagreed with their political views (and we all know how serious an offense that is). Even my own mom asked me to show her how to deactivate her Facebook account until the end of the election because she didn’t want to receive any more notifications about Trump.

I didn’t vote in this election, nor have I voted in any previous election. Now I’ll give you a second to comment about my lack of respect for my civic duty and how I shouldn’t comment on the election if I didn’t vote, etc. Yes, I do have an opinion on who should run our country. No, I will not reveal who. I will say that both candidates definitely were not suited to be president of this country, but I do believe there was one who was the lesser of two evils. I chose not to vote because, frankly, I don’t believe our electoral system is an effective system. Once again, even though I didn’t vote, I did keep up with the election, knew very well what each candidate stood for, and had a very clear opinion on Clinton and Trump. Yet not once did I feel the need to post or comment on another person’s opinion on this election.

Why did we feel the need to verbally assault every person we found who differed in political views? I understand feeling passionate about the presidency but some of the most fervent debaters I came across knew the least about what they were saying.

It’s like that quote by Osho, “The less people know, the more stubbornly they know it.” This is why I never participate in these arguments. Someone who feels the need to post a remark or video on a topic does not want to hear your opposing view. And nine times out of 10 your opinion is not going to change their mind whatsoever. And in the end, you both are just going to end up finding some report or video that supports your view to send to the other person.

And let’s face it, with the election this year, there was more than ample evidence to use to support and tear down either candidate. My point though, if Obama can make amends with Trump and push to work with him, you can find a way to get pass the emotional trauma of this election.

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1 Comment

One Response to “Column: Live and let live in politics”

  1. Bre on December 1st, 2016 5:23 pm

    In a country like America where violence is romanticized, capitalism is praised, but politics is something people find upsetting– I think it is very important to know about someone’s opposing views. My perspective is from a queer, female-bodied person of color– I need to know where my friends, peers, and family stand. Because, usually, if they have differing political views than me, it most likely means that there is some aspect of my identity that they don’t find deserving enough to receive rights.
    It’s very important to know why they feel that way, too. “What are their values?” And, upon figuring that out, it’s time to ask “should I continue to value this person’s opinion (in whatever capacity that is)?” It’s not about changing minds; it’s about staying true to yourself.
    What some people don’t understand is that for me and many people like me, these decisions directly affect my life. Hate practices have increased visibly since the election. Racial bigotry and harassment has visibly increased since the election. People are afraid to go to school, and people are afraid to be alone. This will be for at least the next four years of their lives.
    But when I look at the election results of the people in the 18-25 year-old age bracket, the verdict is vastly different and it gives me hope. It gives me the motivation to help myself and others through this in whatever amount I can manage. While I condemn the electoral college as much as any informed individual, I’m making the most of what our reality is right now, and I urge everyone to do the same.

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Column: Live and let live in politics