It’s been a couple days, and I can finally relax. The stress of the Election is over. At least for me. While a couple states are still counting votes, it’s official: Joe Biden will be the 46th President of the United States come January 2021. I still don’t know what to think. I’m not incredibly upset like some of my friends on the right are, and I’m not celebrating or relieved like my friends who are more left wing. I’m just adopting a “wait and see” attitude. We have no clue how things are going to go once Biden assumes office. Sure, we have educated guesses. But that’s all they are. Guesses and pure speculation.
But I do realize a couple things: Why Trump truly lost, and that the election process needs streamlined and overhauled. First off, it was not a free and fair election. Anyone on the left or right who thinks there were absolutely NO instances of voter fraud by either political party are kidding themselves. There were reportedly at least 150 million people who voted. 30 million more than in 2016. While I am thrilled and happy so many exercised their American right to vote, to truly believe that there were no instances of voter fraud seems incredibly naïve to me. Political parties will try to grab or keep power any way they can. I have little to no trust in the government in this case.
Second, Donald Trump did not lose because the election was stolen from him. He lost because he could not control himself throughout the four years he was in office. He made himself extremely unlikable and extremely un-Presidential by the countless things he said and did. If he had dialed back a year or two ago, it wouldn’t have cost him reelection. If he had quieted down a bit and let everyone who opposed him say their piece, I believe there were enough people in this country who would’ve sided with him based on his policies and platform, rather than his anti-Democrat rhetoric, and their hatred of what they perceive to be “the other side.” Donald can complain until the cows come home that the Biden campaign cheated. But if he wants to know the real reason he lost, he should look in the mirror. The only one who could defeat Donald Trump was Donald Trump. And that’s exactly what happened.
Forgive the use of a football analogy here, folks. But Trump’s reaction to losing the Election reminds me of Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh’s reaction to losing the 2016 Ohio State/Michigan game. In the game, Michigan at one point was leading 17-7 late in the third quarter. They had Ohio State’s backs against the wall. Until Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh lost his temper, snapped his headset, and tossed his clipboard onto the field in disagreement with a penalty. That promptly earned him a 15-yard unsportsmanlike penalty, and Ohio State began their comeback right then and there. After the game was over (a 30-27 Buckeye victory), Jim Harbaugh wanted to blame the officials for his loss. Nowhere did he take responsibility for losing his temper. He refused to admit he screwed things up. But he was the chief reason they lost.
The same is true for Donald Trump. At the end of the day, he has no one to blame but himself for losing. Whether or not he’ll eventually realize that, I don’t know. He’s incredibly arrogant. And it takes a little humility to admit when you’ve screwed up. I have never heard him admit wrongdoing on anything.
But now we must move forward. Do I trust Joe Biden and Kamala Harris to do what’s right for us? No I do not. But I want them to succeed for our country, and I hope and pray they do. I want to be proven wrong. I do not actively want them to fail. I do not want the pilot to crash the plane we’re all on.
The election process also needs streamlined for future elections. Every state seems to have different regulations for voters, as well as different dates for vote counting deadlines. Heck, I don’t even think all states use computers. To streamline everything, I suggest the following measures:
- Have every state convert to computerized voting at the polls if they haven’t already.
- Have a national deadline and cutoff for absentee ballots and mail in ballots in time for the Election. States shouldn’t still be counting votes a week or more after the Election. Plus it leaves too much room for fraud in my opinion, especially in an incredibly tight election like the one we just had.
- Require voting ID for every polling place, as well as copies of verified identification to be returned with every mail-in ballot.
- Allow pollsters from both parties should be allowed to watch and ensure that the votes are being accurately counted. No one should be blocked from making the sure the process was fair, even in the time of a pandemic.
- If possible, begin counting early votes and tabulating information, and reveal that information to the public once the Election is underway. Even in a country as populated as ours, things shouldn’t have taken so long. The only issue I see with my proposed measure, is that someone would be stupid and probably leak this information to the public, causing them to possibly change their voting decision. But if it were possible to prevent that somehow, early counting could be a measure used to speed up the reporting of election results.
I am trying my best to be calm, and to not let my mind run away with thoughts of what might happen come January 2021 once Joe Biden is inaugurated and Kamala Harris becomes Vice President. But I hope they realize that even though Donald Trump will soon be gone, that will not magically cure this country’s problems.
There are still going to be major problems they’ll have to fix. Race relations. Relations between police officers and citizens. People who are genuinely scared that their guns, a right guaranteed by the Second Amendment, are going to be taken away. Rioting and looting in certain cities for any number of reasons. There are so many issues Joe and Kamala are going to have to fix. And I believe that requires getting out and talking with and listening to the people who did not vote for them. I’m one of them. There is so much hurt, fear, anger and pain in this country. And I believe where the healing for that starts, is through genuine discourse with people who disagree with them. And true compassion and a will to help people who are scared and suffering.
Yet in spite of all that is wrong with our country, I still love America so much and have hope that she can be a country we’re all proud of. I am an extremely proud Patriot, and will be until the Good Lord calls me home. I refer to America as The Great Experiment. And in a lot of ways, that’s what she is. Even 244 years after her birth. She is also the Great Melting Pot, a home for millions of diverse and unique people who have brought their stories, cultures, customs, and hopes with them. America certainly isn’t perfect. But she can be great for all people if we learn to treat each other with respect, empathize and be compassionate with each other, and rally around the three key ideals this country was founded upon: The right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness for every person here.
I’ll end with this: Even though Joe Biden and Kamala Harris will be our new President and Vice President, it starts and ends with us. America’s return to being the beacon of hope for the world, or her eventual death starts and ends with us. It starts with us being compassionate to our neighbors who think differently than we do, or ends with us continuing to be hateful, arrogant and divisive. It starts with us honoring and respecting our Founding Fathers, flag, the Declaration of Independence and Constitution, or it ends with us tossing all those things into the trash bin of history. It starts with us returning to civilized and friendly discourse, or ends with us talking over one another and saying and doing hurtful things. And lastly, America LIVES if we turn our hearts back to God. Or she DIES if we continue to live in darkness, hate, arrogance, and selfishness.
The choices are ours, folks. Which ones will you choose?