Shades of Blue
It is Sunday, November 8, the day after it was announced that Joe Biden & Kamala Harris have been elected into the Presidential office. In my 47 years of life, I have never seen a more emotionally charged election than this one. I will admit that I’ve never been an overly political person myself, but this one mattered to me and so I felt it deeply.
It’s very rare that I plop down in front of the TV on a Saturday morning, but for some reason I did yesterday. I was fortunate enough to be watching the news when the banner swept across the screen saying, “Breaking News – Election Update.” When it was announced that Joe Biden was the 2020 President Elect, I sobbed. I am someone who celebrated yesterday.
Up to this point, I’ve been somewhat afraid to admit how strongly I felt about this election. I’m surrounded by a very strong red community in all aspects of my life and so in some ways, I felt like that kid in high school who was a shade of color that just didn’t fit in. I had my few select friends who knew how I felt, and my public respect for the late RBG may have been a strong indicator that I was “blue”. But for the most part, I felt like I was hiding and even holding my breath, just waiting for it to end.
Here’s the thing I want you to know. There are many shades of blue. I’m not sure when the idea came about that if you support a particular candidate that you most certainly support everything that political party stands for. I don’t claim to know everything there is to know about politics, but I do know about human decency and that is what I chose to vote for.
I am a woman who was raised Catholic in a strong Hispanic community. I have deep roots that guide me to follow the Ten Commandments. “Thou Shalt Not Kill” is something I believe in whole heartedly, so the Pro-Life concept is very important to me. Much of my family voted Republican for this reason, and this reason alone. I respect this decision, but I personally question the logic because the very person they voted for also advocates for the death penalty. I’m not sure what part of “Thou Shalt Not Kill” means, “unless you deem it’s ok to kill.” I’m sure there are plenty of people on death row who are either innocent or extremely mentally ill. Because there is some hypocrisy in using the commandment as the sole purpose of voting this way, the logic just isn’t there to use the commandment as the backbone for the decision. If we are going to use the commandment or any moral belief otherwise as the backbone to not killing, should that not stay consistent for us from refraining from taking ANY human life?
I saw a post yesterday where someone (who I love dearly) was absolving themselves from voting for the platform that kills babies. It broke my heart to think that there is a belief that in voting for Biden we are automatically baby killers. It’s simply not true. I am Pro-Life and I voted blue.
And for the record, I don’t believe the Pro-Choice movement is about going around trying to kill unborn babies. They simply advocate for creating choice.
The act of abortion has been going on for a very long time and whether legal or not, some woman would still choose to do it, only in an unsafe manner. I may not agree with it, but I can understand it. Gun control is another example. My belief is that guns themselves highly contribute to the number of gun deaths in this country, but guns would still exist even if we outlawed them, just in an underground manner. Think prohibition.
I have personal experience with discrimination as a Hispanic woman, but I have seen such progress for women and Hispanics in my lifetime. We are finally getting to a place of equality. We are finally getting to a place where our voices are heard. Same goes for every group that has historically been discriminated against. We are progressing as humans and that is a beautiful thing! The fear of clinging to how things were and the fear that things are getting “out of control” because people can actually be who they are – is a great contributor to the division we experience today. I will be the first to admit that I would love for many aspects of our lives to be like they were in the 80’s, but it simply cannot happen. We are evolving just like we always have throughout history. We are now in a digital age and everything has changed. We can either fight it and try to hold on to the traditions and ways we are comfortable with, or we can embrace the inevitable new world we live in and make the best of it.
The one thing that we most certainly have complete control over, is our own behavior. We can love and respect others even when they are different than us. We can treat others with kindness and find common ground rather than division. We can acknowledge our words as the powerful tools they are and refrain from name calling and statements that initiate violence.
I write this post because I realized yesterday, that more than half the country feels the same as I do about who our President should be and to me, it’s more about who WE should be as a society. And yet I still have people that I love dearly who see me as a shade of blue they don’t like. There are so many shades of blue just as there are so many shades of red, and if we open our minds enough to merge them, we may just find the most magnificent purple we can imagine.
If you are upset by the election results, I am sending you a hand of unity. I am sending you love. Just because we voted differently, does not mean we are THAT different. We are fellow Americans and in the big scheme of things, we are on the same team.
And in case you are wondering why I cried when I found out the election results? I cried mostly for my children. Because I felt a wave of relief that they will grow up in a world where they will experience unity and kindness again. They will live in a world where human decency matters and they will be encouraged to be exactly who they are – without fear of being a shade that doesn’t fit in.