Hi, friends. In the US, politics is an intense subject of hostility. With midterm elections wrapping up soon, I feel compelled to write a personal post.
A couple years ago, during the 2016 presidential election, I became obsessed with American politics. I won’t tell you which side I was on because, frankly, I am avoiding further condemnation. Besides, it doesn’t matter for my point. Just know that I was all in–reading the news daily, watching YouTube videos, arguing with Facebook friends, provoking the ire of some loved ones…the whole nine yards of cringe.
My views softened little by little as I got involved with the blogging community over the last year. Not all, but many of my blogging acquaintances are Christians. Their messages about love, patience, kindness, generosity, etc. worked at my heart. I started reading scripture daily instead of the news, and the Holy Spirit began to convict me of the fact that I had said and done so many wrong things. I was not reflecting or pleasing Jesus with my attitude. Instead of standing on a solid rock, I was flailing in sinking sand.
Nowadays, I read posts from people on opposite sides of the aisle who genuinely believe and systematically argue that the other side will destroy the country. In both cases, I’ll read some points and find them valid while thinking “Eh, that’s an exaggeration” with other points. Centrism is not popular; it’s all about “winning the culture war.” As I type this, I contemplate the irony that this post will make people angry for the very fact that it doesn’t take sides. People with polar opposite views will agree that I should have taken a stand. Guess you can’t please everyone. Good thing I have someone else to please.
I want to impart that the people on the opposite side of our extended pointer fingers are just that…people…human beings. Dehumanizing people fleeing to the US isn’t patriotic. Dehumanizing white people isn’t virtuous. Dehumanizing liberals or conservatives isn’t productive. Dehumanization is literally the opposite of Jesus; Jesus saw and helped and loved people that society deemed unworthy. I’ve begun to view these things through a Christian lens rather than a political one. Like Paul, the scales are falling from my eyes.
Whether it is religious faith or a broad sense of spirituality or secular empathy or something else, cling to that which reminds you that other humans matter. Embrace nuance. It’s okay to agree with some points and disagree with others. Listen, learn, and love.
Thanks for reading.