It might continue to be a fight with groundless cases brought forward to delay the inevitable, or maybe he’ll pick up his toys, arrange whatever ill-begotten pardons he intends, wrap up whatever mass shredding exercise is going on, and start his next adventure.
Yeah. We’ll see.
There is a temptation to celebrate, to put this chapter behind us with relief, to lay our hopes in a bright future and congratulate ourselves on disasters averted, to mock those who feel this as a loss as they actively mocked those of us who grieved in 2016.*
*(To be clear: having grieved in 2016 may have had nothing to do with Hillary. Some people yes definitely were fans, but not necessarily. You didn’t have to be a fan of hers (or Obama’s either) to have seen who he was.)
But it is a peeve of mine, in politics. One side (it doesn’t matter which because neither “side” has a lock on righteousness) does something appalling and when called on it they simply point at the other side and say, “They did it first.”
Uh huh, but you complained about it then. You knew it was the wrong way to respond. Do better. When you know right from wrong, choose right.
None of my hope is in Joe Biden, the man. (Though I do pray – as I have for all our leaders before, since coming to faith – that Joe & Kamala may be led, and be used to lead us well, by His grace.)
My hope always was and still is in God my Father, who humbles the proud and lifts up the lowly.
I don’t rejoice in the humbling of a proud man and his sometimes too-proud fans.
I see the humbling of America through this dark season – how far we have fallen and how close we came to falling farther. How close it was and how easily we could still teeter if we don’t turn our hearts and heal the divides.
Only by grace.
I don’t rejoice in the loss felt by his fans and followers – those of us who felt dread and then horror as one by one, customs, norms and even laws were bent and twisted, we know exactly how this same moment felt. It was not good. And while we might have been mocked as snowflakes at the time, we knew that wasn’t right. We knew that mocking our fears did nothing to allay them. I think we can do better.
I am not saying that we need to make room for or meet mean-spiritedness halfway, in the pursuit of tolerance. I am not saying we can leave even one inch of space for racism, for example, to thrive. But I think we can make space for those whose support was founded in misinformation, or who feared that Biden may lead us to Marxism every bit as much as we lamented and fought the slide toward Fascism.
I don’t think he will. They are allowed not to be so sure just yet.
In the same way that after 2016 I tried to hope (in vain as it turned out) that Turnip would rely on experts, keep his promises to rid us of political corruption, and basically not try his best to be the end of us (his time is not quite up, I’m trying not to worry but it’s difficult) — I hope they will allow for the same hope.
Let’s realize that anyone who has been fed Qanon poison in large doses has been digesting a steady diet of the end of the world in this outcome. Their fears are real even if they are unfounded, and the best way forward is to reach out and begin to rebuild bridges – that some might see that we can be one nation, under God, after all.
Before we rest on our laurels or congratulate ourselves on a win (in Georgia a runoff will decide whether McConnell can continue to hold the Senate and the country hostage, and since I don’t think he has America’s best interests in mind either, if KY refuses to send him home I do hope GA will make him less relevant), we should realize the work is not done – it is only beginning.
No… Racism, sexism, anti-semitism, authoritarianism— choose your target undesirable hate-filled “ism” — can’t be allowed to stand. But beyond the evils we all need purged from our hearts minds and spirits, which we must fight against in ourselves and in our society — beyond those issues that cannot and must not be given room, I choose to be kind to my fellow Americans, and to all our struggling brothers and sisters, as much as possible.
If we’ve been saved from the brink, we need to be thankful, and we need to work together and step away from that edge. Otherwise we can stumble, fall, be pushed, or even race headlong over it.
We have so many problems we still need to solve. There is no room for self-congratulation. Only for the hard work ahead that we’ve been called to.
I hope we will find a way to see the good in one another, to love each other through this challenging time, to lift each other up and work toward a stronger, less divided nation.
Country over party.
People over politics.
Under God, one nation. Part of a gently spinning, lovely world.