We’ve all heard the saying. We’ve all used it. Recently, we’ve been rightfully castigated for using it… it’s a fraught calculus, to hate the sin but not the sinner. But this morning, those six words found fresh purchase in my mind… as I laid in bed reviewing the events of the last several hours.
And while I hold out a sliver of hope that the Electoral College—our weapon of last resort—will be put to good use, denying the presidency to a creature so un-prepared for and ill-disposed to that high office… I can’t really wait around for that bit of intrigue to play out.
I have bridges to mend.
Which brings me back to those six words.
Those six words lever open my closed heart… give me pause enough to collect thoughts, as I look into the faces of people I know, people I love… people I go to church with or work alongside… people reading this very post—as I look into their faces (or at their user handles) and am forced to engage in the perspective-taking that leads to hope and makes room for healing.
And healing is imperative, if we’re to engage in the heavy lifting that lies ahead. And there is heavy lifting, to be sure.
Of all those I know who voted for Trump—or voted for those who will be extensions of his will—most voted for Trump for reasons that are familiar to someone like me, who campaigned for Bernie Sanders: a distrust of the political elite, a sense that we were slipping into uncharted waters, a fear that without momentous change we’d face dire consequences. They voted for Trump because they love this nation and were willing to make a bold move to save it from itself. Not a single one voted for him because they thought he was praiseworthy or of good report. To a one, they thought he was the lesser of two evils. And now that he is likely to be our next president and the commander in chief of the world’s largest and most powerful army, we must band together to staunch the flow of consequences.
And there will be consequences—large and small, near and far—repercussions for women, people of color, the disabled, our working poor, religious minorities, our NATO allies, our armed forces, the global stock market, people with pre-existing medical conditions, our children… not to mention our 401(k)s.
So here’s to pausing and asking and listening.
Here’s to healing and heavy lifting.