We are hearing calls to forgive and move on together as a nation. Most of us would like nothing better than to have a united, functional nation that can address difficult, complex problems the way adults do: by studying and discussing and relying on experts, and trying our best, and correcting course as new information arrives.
I’m going to work on forgiving trump voters for the harm they’ve caused to the nation and the world, but I’m not going to forget. I’m not going to forget that weeks after a tape was released showing trump boasting about grabbing women by the genitals, you voted for him. You stood by him when he separated children from their parents and put them in cages. You stood by him when he mocked a reporter for a disability. You stood by him when he called soldiers who gave their lives for this country, “losers”, and asked what’s in it for them. You stood by him when he mocked people for wearing masks. You participated in spreading false information. participated in the falsehood that the Coronavirus isn’t a deadly disease.
You stood by him when he lied, over and over. You were silent or complicit when his administration shoehorned a supreme court justice in, while voting was already underway, though you agreed with Mitch McConnell that it wasn’t appropriate to even consider allowing Obama to fill a vacancy on supreme court 18 months before an election. You cheered when he called the racists in Charlottesville “good people”. You shared lies, claiming that our sacred election process is a fraud. You stood by when he had mass, mask-less rallies in defiance of medical experts and local officials who work hard to save lives. You made immigrants, people of color, and many others feel unsafe by endorsing or staying silent in the face of hateful rhetoric. You lauded Trump, a man who paid hush money to porn stars so they would be silent about his use of prostitutes while his wife was pregnant, as a family man.
Meanwhile, you attacked us as “liberal snowflakes” on social media, and answered our legitimate questions about these and the myriad of other fraudulent and disgusting behaviors with red herrings, like Hillary’s e-mails or Hunter Biden or cries of, “but socialism!” and any number of accusations. You were not kind to us.
It seems that your biggest fear is that Biden will raise taxes. As if adjusting the way revenue that the country runs on, by increasing the share paid by the wealthiest among us, is a bad thing.
You forsook the traditional news sources and decided to believe unbelievable things, like there’s a cabal of Satanist pedophiles trying to take down trump. Think about it. Are vast conspiracies, where lots of people secretly coordinate secretly, realistic? Have you ever tried to have a surprise party?
I will work hard to forgive you, because we all deserve second and third and even 500th chances, but you have lost my respect. Maybe you can earn it back, we’ll see. You’ll have to put in effort though. We’ve all done things that we regret, because we acted carelessly, or ignorantly. We learn and we grow. But the mark of decency is to own it, apologize, and explain what happened. We all want to know: why did you endorse the cruel acts?
I believe we can move on together as a nation, because that’s what grownups do. We understand that we’re all living on this tiny planet together, and we can politely stare at the ceiling or chat about the weather. Beyond that, I will bring soup if I hear you’re sick. If your children are suffering, I will do what I can. I will try to be decent; I will try to model decency. But I cannot unsee what I’ve seen.