Something relatively cool and incidental: scrolling over the NYTimes election map and looking at the voting populations. Just look at those millions.
I said this to a couple of people last night, and now it's for sure: I'm officially an Independent now. As of this election. I made my decision a few weeks ago, and now I'm sure. I'm what a Republican used to be. Not what a Republican is now, unfortunately. I'd like to say that I want the Republicans to no longer be the conservative party, but I'm not sure that's reasonable... SOME party will always be the conservative party. The folks who want things to be like the old ways are going to exist, and they're going to land somewhere, and they're going to try and land in the same spot if possible so that they can stick together. I just wish it hadn't been my party, during a time when the issues at stake involved sexual freedom more than anything else.
The last 8 years have been hard. I have over 100 people on my flist. Of those, maybe... maybe four of them openly identify as having Republican politics.
That's hard, folks. To feel THAT out of place? Over something so incredibly divisive? Where moral accusations -- not to mention accusations of stupidity -- are the order of the day? It's hard.
And I don't know if everybody does this, but I know a lot of people do: every horrible thing I ever heard said about Republicans? It got stored away. The reasonable things were lost in the shuffle. But the insults, the frantic terrors, the wild accusations, stand out so sharply. I've stored up a lot of pain in 8 years. Enough that, even now, I'm cringing at writing this because I immediately expect a dozen comments to the effect of, "What does your pain matter, you evil Republican? You were killing and eating babies the whole time!" The bile alone is enough to ensure: I'll never be a Democrat, either. I couldn't ever be. Not now. I could vote for one, but you'll never catch me at a rally.
I've been quietly (and not always gracefully) bent out shape for 8 years, and trying like hell to be the Reasonable Representative of a Detested Group. The cartoon image you want to think of is the character with the great big smile full of cracked teeth from grinding them together.
It's so easy to focus on all of the horrible things I've seen said. And to ignore those of you who have been gracious, and dignified, and kind... those of you who really did espouse the liberal ideal of looking over the fence and seeing a human being on the other side of it. So I'm going to try and focus on YOU guys, who stayed cool. Who tried their best to do what I try to do: to base your ethics upon who you are, and not upon who you're reacting to.
Thank you. I didn't appreciate you enough. The last 8 years could have been much worse.
I want to live up to your example, you cool people.