Election 2016: It was the worst of times

I'm just going to cut to the chase today. I've held my tongue long enough for the sake of diplomacy and getting along peacefully. We, as the American public, have never experienced such electoral divide until an African-American man and a woman became serious contenders for the Commander-In-Chief spot. Never before have we sunk to such campaign lows and lost friendships over a Presidential election.

On the surface, a shallow mind would casually observe that true friendships can't be lost over political differences. Obviously, throughout history, people have lived side by side and gotten along peacefully with different political opinions but it is the fundamental differences that drive people apart. A cat cannot befriend a fish. A lion cannot befriend a buffalo. I, as a Black woman, cannot befriend a sexist racist. Some things are not negotiable and I don't apologize for that.

For the past 8 years, I have sat back often quietly (quite a challenge for me) and endured quite a bit of racist behavior in my social media circles as that type of behavior is NEVER exuded in the flesh. Keyboard cowards take to the internet to solicit support and praise from ill-advised cartoons or memes, skewed statistics, satirical articles or misleading headlines. While their posts may attempt to be passed off as humor or opinions not of their own, they quietly sit back while their friends reply with racist rhetoric; never condemning or stopping the behavior and therefore choosing a side. Pay attention.

People are actually angry about change. They want the Presidential photos to reflect rows and rows of White men. They don't want to allow opportunity to anyone who doesn't fit what we've always had. But what if what we've always had wasn't in the best interest for the greater good?Power is a dangerous hunger. When those in power feel threatened, they will resort down the darkest avenue to reclaim it.

Racism and sexism have always existed and will continue to exist but it is how you respond to it that will navigate your peace of mind in life. Only those in power within an infrastructure can harm you with those outdated views. Someone spewing hateful words or posting a racist facebook meme can't hurt you. Don't allow it to disrupt your spirit.

I am grateful that this election has created a platform which has shed a light on those in my circle who hold racist and sexist views. By unveiling their cloaks, they have revealed to me who they truly are and I am grateful for it.

Continue to hold values that are dear to you close to your heart. Continue to be selective of who and what you allow into your life. Everything is not for everybody and that is okay. We've lived through the worst of times before and we will continue to thrive through adversity and despair no matter who sits in the Oval Office.


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