I won't pretend to write some educated post regarding politics here since my knowledge is comparable to that of a child, and most foreigners probably know more about American policy than I do but it's hard not to have opinions on everything happening at this time whether or not it is accurately founded. I would say that 98% of my understanding of the candidates stem from watching the debates which makes about as much sense as drinking Diet Coke and calling it healthy. All that the debates consist of are one person claiming something, while the other declares it untrue over and over and over. I know I should learn more about politics and muster up enough motivation to care, I know that even though I live in Utah where there was the greatest discrepancies between candidate votes, I should still probably vote (confession: I didn't.) because it is a right and privilege that others previous have sacrificed to make happen. I know that the mindset of 'whoever is president will never really affect me to a point where I am aware of it' is extremely egocentric and ignorant. I applaud the people who year round educate themselves on policies being passed and the issues at hand but at the same time, those who are most involved with politics often come across as extremely polarizing and well bitter and I don't necessarily find that an effective method of communication or education. I have enough cynicism in my humor that adding more cynicism to my world view might be overkill. Why are people involved with politics so mad? Is this a gross generalization?
It's been very interesting reading people's comments on Facebook after the election - some wallowing in the pit of despair, and others elated! But even those ecstatic seem more pleased by ones loss than ones win. The negativity still rears it's ugly head! But what is most interesting are the vast numbers of "friends" on there who are so impassioned by politics (at least for 48 hours). If one of the biggest critisisms of the President is that he didn't do much, that there was little change then how can you be so so upset? Is this naive of me to think? It just seems like there was a lot of talk that the two candidates varied little, one slightly to the left, one slightly to the right but again I openly admit that this is where my complete and total lack of understanding of the two men shines through. I don't want it to seem that I am promoting an Ignorant is Bliss philosophy. I respect and aspire to be one who has made and continues to form educated decisions and opinions based on something greater and more substantial than party lines, however I just simply cannot understand why that is continually accompanied by negativity.
Let me reiterate that I encourage political opinion and applaud political action and that my lack of effort and apathy is born out of, well laziness really and it's pathetic. I believe that thinking critically is important and healthy. That disagreements are inevitable and that's fine. However, I do believe that when your attitudes, beliefs, and words in general are laced with cynicism and consistantly antagonistic then your ability to inform and thus create change are halted and impede progression. And that you lose your ability to have productive conversations with anyone. And then you become mad for the sake of being mad. My message is this, be a little more optimistic, be a little more grateful that life is pretty OK, help those around you, and educate yourself for the sake of being educated and informed and not just so you have fuel to bring to the next disagreement.