I don’t fear for America.
Apparently that’s not the case for many of us who look forward to this election as if the good news for a condemned man is he has a choice of how he is going to die — by firing squad or execution.
In no way disparaging either presidential candidate or their supporters but one man — or one woman — can’t change the disposition, fears, and dreams of 325 million people. I get there are judicial appointees and how government operates for or against the people is in play and that some frame it as Pinocchio versus the emcee of the Liar’s Club. I can’t say whether it is posturing or all hot air. The only two people who can honestly answer that question — assuming they can be honest with themselves — will have perhaps a sixth of the nation they are seeking to govern as president hanging on their every word they utter tonight on the aptly named boob tube.
But here’s the real bottom line.
America is not going to the proverbial hell in a hand basket on Jan. 20, 2017 at noon regardless who has their hand on the Bible (assuming that is politically correct for the winner) or takes the oath with their fingers crossed or follows being sworn in with swearing.
I know. I know. America’s at the crossroads. If you’re old enough to remember when national politics were inspired by both sides actively seeking common ground instead of pouring their feet in a truckload of cement while demonizing those that think or believe differently with all the subtlety of the Tasmanian Devil after downing a case of Red Bull then you’ve heard that line at just about every election cycle.
The inconvenient truth for all of us is that Hillary Clinton nor Donald Trump are going to make a difference in what really counts — our attitudes.
If you are looking to the government for meaning to your life and to take care of every want and need, you are in for a rude awakening. The collapse of the Soviet Union and what subsequently unveiled is a stark reminder that utopia via the government is all smoke and mirrors.
Those who are willing to let what wafts out of Washington, D.C., or Sacramento — either from dirty politics or from bureaucratic regulators apparently smoking the good stuff — dictate how they live their lives and view the world, they need to look around.
Among all the upheaval and dissent — essentially the same thing, different year — there is incredible good and hope.
Look beyond the homeless who have elected for whatever reason to end upon the streets by their choices or refusal to follow rules and ponder the hardest toilers among us — farm workers that are hired to do the most menial jobs of weeding and picking.
They haven’t lost hope nor or they developing ulcers over the state of national politics. Instead they go to work every day toiling for 10 or so hours in conditions that would have most of us whining non-stop. To most of us their lives look bleak. But the funny things is they aren’t the ones acting as if they are about to give up on America or assume the end times prophecy comes true starting on Nov. 8, 2016 regardless of who is elected.
Yes, they are driven by basic needs to feed, clothe and shelter their families but you don’t see them fleeing to Jonestown to blindly drink the Kool-Aid. They obviously believe in tomorrow and a better future for their children. If they didn’t, they of all people would have a justified reason throw in the towel.
They’re not howling about Clinton or gnashing their teeth over Trump.
Neither Clinton nor Trump can control my attitude or actions.
There’s 325 million of us and – after Nov. 8 – one of them.
What the president does matters.
But what matters most is what we do.
They can’t issue executive orders that end racism, raise our standard of living, stops gun violence, or make us happy.
On all of those things and more we are in the driver’s seat.
Presidents are not America’s version of North Korea Supreme leader Kim Jong-un who seems hell-bent on elevating George Orwell’s book “1984” to prophecy status.
The odds are most people — myself included — won’t like at least 50 percent of what is said tonight during the debate. That’s why there are two major candidates for president and not one. And while many may agree the issue is over the caliber of choices, at the end of the day a lot of us won’t like who is elected.
Just because we are likely to have someone as president that a large number of people out of the gate will view as a loser won’t make whatever fears we have come true.
If you listen carefully the fears most of us voice aren’t president-centric. Instead they are things that depend a lot upon how we act and view them. Hearing how tough we all have it is a little disconcerting given what America went through from 1929 to 1945.
America back then didn’t cower in fear nor should we now.
If country had the moxie to survive the Great Depression and World War II either a Hilary Clinton or Donald Trump presidency should be a walk in the park.