Friday, November 11, 2016

8 Things I Have Learned From Voting In My First Election

It has only been a few days since the Election and I cannot sit back and watch the hate anymore. FROM BOTH SIDES. I can't believe the things I am seeing and I am so disappointed in some of the people that I have admired my whole life, but not for the reason everyone else is so up in arms about. Who you voted for doesn't change my opinion of you. How you react to who won does.

This election has been a dirty, disgraceful doozy, and I am so sad that for a lot of people including myself that this was the first election we got to participate in. So without further ado here are a few things I have learned from participating in my first presidential election.

1. Overly Opinionated = Arrogant
Let's be real for a second. I am all for sharing your opinions and especially having your own opinions, after all this America. But when you start being hateful toward others with differing opinions that is where you start to look like you believe you are above everyone else. Bashing people on Facebook and gloating over a win or calling people names because of who they voted for is unacceptable. Just agree to disagree and move on.

2. Politics Matter
Before this election I, like many other millennials didn't really care about politics. I didn't like seeing people fighting over things. I didn't like the division that it causes. And I didn't like feeling inferior to those who think differently than me. But actually educating myself during this election has taught me a valuable lesson that these things do matter and while I still don't like the things that politics normally bring about, my vote matters. With this election and the extremism of both candidates it has forced a lot of us who didn't care before, to pay attention.

3. Two Wrongs Don't Make a Right
I know I can't be the only one who is tired of seeing people saying that different races are what's wrong with America. I can't even tell you how many different posts I have seen saying "White Christians need to fix America" "White Men are the problem" "Good morning America, except white people you can all die". And on the other spectrum, people of color being beaten and humiliated because of the color of their skin or beliefs. It has to stop. Telling people that they are the problem won't change the fact that Donal Trump will step into the oval office in January. We need to come together and show each other support and love.

4. Fighting with others doesn't change who was elected
This one really speaks for itself. I just know I am tired of being blamed for things that aren't my fault and for things I will never have the power to fix.

5. Either way this election went, I was going to be scared
Again, I'm in shock that these two people were the only real options for our country's presidency. Both candidates possess qualities that terrify me, and either way, whoever won the election I was going to be afraid for our country.

6. Family is important
Unfortunately I have witnessed so many of my family members get in over their heads with anger or pride that they start blaming other family members. I can't stress enough that the blame game doesn't do any good. Instead, coming together and listening and supporting each other's hopes, dreams, wishes and fears will help us understand each other. We are all entitled to our own opinions but just because someone thinks differently than you, doesn't give you the right to disown them, and you can't expect someone to change their views just because you feel a certain way.

7. You can't believe every Facebook post you read
 It is no secret that the media has completely blown everything out of proportion, but those of you constantly sharing hateful, untrue posts are just perpetuating the situation.  What good does sending random Facebook posts to people who disagree with you do? Nothing but drive a rift between you and that person. Also, check your facts, a lot of those stories are just opinions or exaggerated facts.

8. Love will always conquer
I can't stress enough that hate will do nothing. We need to come together as a nation and support each other no matter what your political view is. That will send more of a message than anything that we are ONE and we will not be easily divided. Right now we are letting the enemy win. No more division, no more hate.

I purposely didn't share any opinions on politics because I want people to view me as me and not who I voted for. I hope that others will follow me in being kind to EVERYONE, especially those with differing opinions. Now is the time more than ever to come together and show the world that we will not allow any government or leader separate us. I am with anyone and everyone, no matter your Race, gender, sexuality, or religion. No more division.

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