It appears that the 2016 presidential race will go down as one of the craziest ever. And we’ve had our share of belligerent campaigns. The pundits seem to agree that the worst, most contentious, elections were: 1800, 1824, 1860, 1876, 1912, 1948, and 2000. So American democracy has survived a number of elections that would have torn any other country apart.
The vitriol of this one reminds me of another, not on the list: 1968. Then, it was the Vietnam War that tore us apart. Now, it is the ever-widening gap between the rich and the rest. But, like the other nastiest presidential contests, our democracy survived. “What does not kill us makes us stronger.”
We know that this circus spectacle that has hurled Americans into a vitriolic and hurtful media vortex will culminate in a vote in less than thirty days. Deprived of its food source: ratings and the money they bring, the media circus will wind down and finally, end.
We can hope that things will change after that.
But hope is not a method. So if we fit what Alexis DeTocqueville called us, “the great American experiment,” and remain “the hope of the world,” it is incumbent on us to actively seek out ways to correct the underlying problems that have led to this debacle. To confront the issues, work to fix them, or face the inevitable consequences.
This kerfuffle will pass. But what remains is “if you want peace, seek justice.”
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