I am ashamed.
I thought I’d be primarily angry, but mostly right now I am ashamed. OK, I’m pretty pissed off too. But mostly I feel shame. I’m ashamed to be an American. I think the time has come to create a different expression of being an American.
Like many, I’m mystified, shell-shocked, disoriented. I understand how so many of my fellow patriots feel disillusioned by “old guard” Washington, and long for “change.” I get it. You make sense there. But I am baffled that so many would throw the baby out with the bathwater, putting such a dangerous clown, so utterly and blatantly unfit for office, in the White House. It is unfathomable to me that we would put our national security at risk, and damage our rapport with so much of the world with such a reckless choice. This is the natural result of a culture fed a steady diet of Kardashians, Ducky Dynasty and dumbed-down white-washed fundamentalist Christianity. It is the surest sign of the Dumbing-Down of American culture to date. The lazy, anti-intellectual has over-taken the progressive, intellectual, forward thinking character that made America a leader in the world.
Makes me wonder, what was Obama’s real crime? What it that he is black? Or was it just too much for white America to accept a smart, progressive intellectual black man as the leader of our nation?
Clearly this was a reaction against the model he presented of what it means to be a man, a leader, an American. I am ashamed of you who chose this, ashamed to be a part of this. This is not my choice. This is not the America I want. Like all of us, I now have to suffer the inevitable consequences of this reckless choice. War and chaos is coming, you fools.
The message is clear: a man no longer has to TRY to be better. A man no longer has to even TRY to be a better man, to be more sensitive, to be more humble, to be more intelligent or informed, to do his inner work, to do his homework, prepare and TRY to demonstrate some dignity and character. All the principles I was raised with—out the window. All the years of work on what it means to be a man is just a personal choice now that has no real value to the majority here. How foolish can you be to put this clown, who spits so much rancid word salad, into such a high office? Have you no sense of decency?
And then there is me. There’s no way to be honest if I’m not real about myself. No doubt the trolls will jump on this, since this election has made it clear that vulnerability and sensitivity are not esteemed values in Trump-land. But it takes a true warrior to stand up and declare oneself honestly in such a hostile climate, and new warriors will be the salvation of our culture. I notice how hard its been for me to hold onto my own decency while engaging this issue. How difficult it is for me to be graceful and eloquent while negotiating so much foolery. I miss that part of me. I miss the eloquent, peace-loving nature that sits at the center of my being. No matter the circumstances, I vow to get back inside of that. For today, though, I admit I don’t know how to be that man in the face of so much anger, fear and shame right now. But I’ll learn. Its our new mandate. I will find a way to fight for the values I aspire to embody while recognizing the inherent dignity in all of us, even Trumpettes. I know this much: I’ve never met a person who, deep in the core of their being, is not a good person. Every person I’ve ever been able to really connect with has had the same exact yearnings I do: the longing to be loved, to feel lovable, worthy, and good. Every person I’ve ever met wants to be valued, appreciated and acknowledged. The dearth of that inherent right is pathogenic. It’s disease forming. I don’t believe anyone is fundamentally bad. And when I’ve been able to truly connect with Fox News-loving-Trump lovers, I’ve been able to see this goodness. The challenge is to look deeper than this election has asked us to. But this must be the new way. To put forth some effort. To look deeper, and connect with who each person really is.
One of my favorite sayings goes: “Every next level of your life will demand a different you.”
A new America has emerged, and this requires a new me. It requires a new us. The time is now. Game on.
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