It’s over. The 2016 Election was an amazing script, and kept me guessing until the very end. The epilogue is about to begin, and will most likely last four years. Some of the 300 million characters in this story lost. Some of them won. And now, we deal with the aftermath. A divided nation.
It’s fun seeing this election as a story. Though, something funny happens when viewing America in this way. Those voters, the people that are celebrating or lamenting the results right now? They are characters in this story.
As a writer, there is nothing worse than a character with no motivation. I personally think every man and woman who voted in this election had great motivation. Every single one of them had a vision for the future of America.
What visions do you think motivated the other voters?
This is a very important question. The country is currently divided. Gloating and insults fly back and forth, assumptions about characters are made, and empty threats of civil war even pop up. Why?
We are all fully-developed characters in this story. We all had a reason for our vote. Half of the country is not stupid. Half of the country is not evil. Half of the country is not mysogynistic. Half of the country is not racist.
This is not a country full of bigots.
I hear complaints already. No. Stop complaining. Half of this country is not what you think they are. If it was, we’d be seeing worse than the election results. Far worse.
This is what is actually happening: Each half of the country is ignoring the characterization of the other half. Have you ever actually asked why someone supports the other candidate, seeking an honest answer? Must as I hate to say it, due to my biases, there were good reasons on each side of the election.
Each candidate was revealed to us. Scandals were unearthed, problems set before them, and they were forced to declare their own ideal visions for America.
Both candidates have faults. Both also have virtues.
Did you vote because of your view on abortion? Immigration? Your fear of the other candidate? For justice? For LGBT rights? To drain the swamp? To make America stronger? To make it greater? To set a standard for equality? Simply as a protest? As a standard of dignity? For tax reform? For healthcare reform? For expansion of programs? For open trade? Against the TPP? For the wall?
I do not agree with half of those reasons, at least. I could argue a fair point on each of them, and disagree with the best of them. I might not like your values or your position once we finish speaking. That is not important.
Here is the important part:
No matter how wrong you think a person is, or how many lies you think they have been fed, they are still acting for the better of the country. They are acting with the best reason that they can. All of their characterization has led up to this choice in the script.
Do not demean them or mock them. Do not call them outright bigots and racists (some may be, but it’s a minority). Do not assume their stupidity. In their place, you might be making the same decision.
Instead, openly listen to them. To their ideas. Discuss, refute, but accept that they want this country to be great as much as you do. They are a part of the country. We don’t need agreement. We need the understanding of a common goal.
This is not a country of poorly-developed characters. Stop pretending that it is. We are three-dimensional, complex human beings. We all nead to realize this, and stand proud with a better America in mind.
We’re stronger together. Please, let’s make America great again.
See you around!