Years ago my best friend and I would engage in regular, intense debate about politics. At the time I was voting for both parties but mostly favored Republican candidates. The Republican Party, although no more racially diverse at the time, seemed to be more diverse in its ideology.
This time around, I approached friends, relatives, and associates who voted for Mitt Romney, but I couldn’t get one of them to write about their feelings regarding the outcome of the election. In hindsight I can see why it would be difficult. I have heard individuals associate Republicans with racists and elitists. I know this is not the case.
To be sure, a Black President has brought out the inner racists in some, but I would say that they are a powerful, vocal, and particularly vitriolic minority. Some have not wasted any time in expressing their angst over the “demise of America” and their plan to become citizens of Canada… where they have a constitutional monarchy and universal healthcare.
I agree with the majority, that the President deserves more time. No matter how many times and ways our current economic state is laid at his feet, the majority of Americans trust him to make things better.
The people of the United States expressed their desire to give President Obama another four years, much to the disbelief of the GOP. The GOP leaders are in a quandary. After decades of shrinking diversity, the proverbial chickens have come home to roost. The consequence of focusing on a narrow segment of the population has alienated many from the party and deemed it out of touch by some. As a result, hundreds of millions of dollars spent to defeat President Obama and to elect Mitt Romney could not deliver the White House to the GOP. This excites me not because I am anti-Republican, but because it reveals that the real power lies in the hands of the people, where it should be. And the people exercised that power. They exercised it in spades.
I heard someone say that, in essence, one individual can fight their opponent with the power of ten men, but when it comes down to it, they can only vote once. The billionaire gets one vote, the middle-class single mom gets one vote, the person who is homeless gets one vote. It is the great equalizer.
I am encouraged by what happened in the 2012 election, but the citizenry must remain as engaged as they were in the months leading up to it. We must keep government officials and public servants from both political parties on our radar. They have to know that we are watching, that we are paying attention, that they represent all Americans, and, most importantly, that we can recall it all when we cast our vote.