Some small irony that I started posting a little over four years ago as an outlet for my political and creative frustrations. Took me a while to find my voice but have avoided politics since. Then again, I’ve made friends thru posting who sit on the opposite side of the aisle from me, have had public political disagreements with, but always circled back to the reasons we stay in touch – connection, friendship, and the written word.

This political cycle was no less exhausting than the last. Only this time it seemed even more abrasive, louder, and at times, viciously antagonistic.

No need to stress what side of the line I stand on – that would only brand me as partisan winner or loser. I’m not interested in that. What I am interested in is reducing suffering both financial and physical – if only because I’ve experienced both. Although all men and women are responsible for the consequences of their decisions, those same decisions and consequences are often formed in the cauldron of politics.

This past weekend, two days before the election, and without attempting to predict a winner, Frank Bruni wrote in the Sunday edition of the NY Times:

Purge the acrimony of the campaign. Transcend whatever distrust and disappointment linger. And for a while at least, until you have fresh cause to abandon the project, give the winner a real chance to do some good, and give him the benefit of the doubt….

In the end it’s possible to see whoever prevails in the presidential election not as the less principled, more fortune-kissed candidate but as the one whose message had the most appeal and whose prescriptions voters felt like putting their chips on, at least at this particular juncture.

And granting that person an initial degree and grace period of trust seems to me not only the democratic thing to do, but also the constructive one. Maybe he’ll choose sensible solutions over sharply partisan ones. Wait and see and nudge and hope, because the alternative simply perpetuates the political dysfunction in a country being steadily diminished by it. The alternative doesn’t get us any closer to solving problems that grow bigger and bigger with time.

We have so many problems to confront and so much opportunity to do so. I’m hoping that acrimony, and partisan politics for the sake of partisan politics, will be set aside. I don’t know that we can survive locally – or globally – without doing so.

Onward we go. And thankfully it will now be without campaign ads, email blasts, and robo calls…

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