Sunday, November 6, 2016

It's Almost Over, Folks

by Jewel Leann Williams

This (Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad) election cycle is almost over. It does not need to be said that the country, nay the world, is ready for it to be over. Our collective sanity and IQ's have all gone down at least 10 percent.

Most of us have had some button pushed at one time or another during the past year, and we've maybe said some things that we shouldn't have. Been a little more contentious than we should have, or less patient, or a little judgey.  It has been a LONG campaign. Check this paragraph from a New York Time article about the length of our election cycle when compared with the rest of the world:

So, where does voter fatigue come from, and why does it seem to be getting worse? One part of the problem is that our election season is simply too long. The United States has the longest head-of-state campaign season by a long shot. Senator Ted Cruz, the first serious candidate to announce he was running, announced on March 23, 2015. That means that, by Election Day, the campaign will have gone on for 597 days. In the span with which we’ve been paying attention to the same presidential campaign, we could have instead hosted approximately four Mexican elections, seven Canadian elections, 14 British elections, 14 Australian elections or 41 French elections.  (Roller, Emma for
597 DAYS. Wow. No wonder we're all tired and cranky.
Here's another interesting article about how our elections compare with several other countries:

Another reason we are so fatigued and downright belligerent about this election (aside from the candidates, but I'm not going there) is the negativity in the campaign. Somehow we've let the attack-dog atmosphere influence our interactions with strangers, friends, and even family, and turned us all into rabid zombie tribes tearing out each others' throats.

But this campaign season isn't the meanest or dirtiest ever... well, maybe it is... but for a little historical perspective, let's review some of the things other candidates have said in their attacks in the past:

  • Republicans told everyone that the Catholic Smith had commissioned a secret tunnel 3,500 miles long, from the Holland Tunnel to the Vatican in Rome, and that the Pope would have say in all presidential matters should Smith be elected  (Herbert Hoover about Al Smith, 1928)
  • "Are you prepared to see your dwellings in flames... female chastity violated... children writhing on the pike? GREAT GOD OF COMPASSION AND JUSTICE, SHIELD MY COUNTRY FROM DESTRUCTION."  (John Adams, about Thomas Jefferson, 1800)
  •  Jackson's people said that Adams had sold his wife's maid as a concubine to the czar of Russia. (Andrew Jackson, about John Quincy Adams, 1828)
  • Adams supporters attack Jackson's family, calling his dead mother "a common prostitute, brought to this country by the British soldiers," after whose service she "married a MULATTO MAN, with whom she had several children of which number General JACKSON IS ONE!!!" Jackson's wife, who was previously married and (accidentally) not completely divorced prior to her second marriage, they call a "convicted adulteress." When she dies within days of Jackson's victory, he blames Adams' vicious campaign practices, exclaiming at her funeral, "May God Almighty forgive her murderers as I know she forgave them. I never can." (John Quincy Adams about Andrew Jackson, 1828)
I know, just because everyone else is doing it doesn't make it right. But, this isn't a unique election, mudslinging has always been around. 

I know, I know. It's all so depressing. In an effort to remind us all that America is the greatest nation in the world, here are some Canadians telling us why they love us: 

And lastly, a beautiful rendition of a patriotic song and prayer, God Bless America: 

Hopefully that was a little bit of a tonic for the giant stomachache of the past 594-ish days, or at least a reprieve. 

Please remember, God is still in charge--if we are righteous, we will all be okay in the end. 

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