Post-Election Feelings

How is everyone feeling?

Every election we've had in my adult life has felt tumultuous and scary, particularly when Bush II was in charge. Then we had Trump's reign of horrors and I discovered I missed Bush II. Does anyone else think this is an incredibly toxic way to elect a leader? Something this divisive and often mean-spirited needs to be changed, especially when we get someone so abusive and hate-mongering in charge afterward who refuses to accept election results.

I really think we'd be better served with the following system: each candidate is tasked with raising GOBS of money that they can't use on ads at all. They must instead compete, reality TV style (since that's what at least half the nation seems to enjoy), and see who can make the biggest difference with their funds raised. Imagine how we'd all look forward to seeing the change every four years as the candidates combat homelessness or help raise drug treatment center funds or get thousands of people jobs. Amazing! Then they all get ONE ad each during which they may only speak of themselves and what they've accomplished, and they are fact-checked. Boom.

Until we reach a day when our politics can reflect that kind of growth and togetherness, and until we can dismantle white supremacy and the patriarchy and too many marginalized people aren't asked to "let bygones be bygones" by the people who voted against their very lives, we'll have to settle for clinging to hope and to one another as we wait for January 20. How are you holding up?

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What Are Your Issues?

Share what you care about most

During an election season, many voters have some key issues on their mind when choosing a candidate. Some vote on one or two main issues while others look at a bigger picture; still some vote on personality, allowing issues to take the back burner.

For me, civil rights and the environment take center front stage, followed by healthcare and education. There are a myriad of issues that I really care about, but those are my top ones that influence my vote. If a candidate ignores the environment we live in, or climate change at all, he or she won't get my vote. The same goes if he or she thinks that we shouldn't get fair and equal treatment, or that a uterus should be legislated.

How about you? What are you top issues?

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The Worst And Best Of The Week

Toss your ingredients into this garbage smoothie!

Folks, hope sure feels in short supply lately, doesn't it? With a new Supreme Court justice appointed who may set back LGBTQ, abortion and other rights back decades sworn in without any further hope on Covid relief, Trump leaving hundreds of elderly people high and dry in Omaha after a rally and signing onto a big anti-abortion international agreement and the fact that he's appointed 220 judges across the land to do this bidding (and he hand-selected RBG's replacement to be her polar opposite), and the fact that, well, the Electoral College still exists... I've been feeling rather bleak. I know I'm not alone.

So I thought we could share the things that we're most worried about (see mine above!) before sharing actual GOOD, hopeful news. For starters, Gens Y and Z are turning out in droves to vote early, which may be the best thing to come from this election. We have record numbers of LGBTQ people running, and in my own state, we may elect our first female governor! As exciting as that is, I can't help but be sad that it's taken this long, or that I'm not casting my vote for the woman I'd hope would be our next president this year. But I'm voting for Biden and Kamala Harris on Tuesday, and I'm excited at the prospect of her as VP.

How about you? Share your highs and lows, take a mental health break when you need it but don't stop fighting!

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Demi Lovato Releases "Commander in Chief"

What do you think of the song and video?

Most Americans are so ready to get someone in office who doesn't embarrass us on a daily basis, cares about the entire nation rather than his or her base, does something--anything--about this pandemic and united the country to move forward on everything from global warming to social justice to mask mandates. Demi Lovato is no exception and says that she doesn't care if her new song, "Commander In Chief," turns any of her fans away from her.

The song is a powerful testament to our deep need for change as well as the problems that have erupted or severely worsened beneath this administration. There are references to Black Lives Matter, the pandemic, the importance of voting. In one of her most powerful lines, Lovato says that if she did the things Trump did, she wouldn't be able to sleep.

What did you think of the video? Do you have your voting plan ready? If not, do you need help? Please ask for it in the chat if you do!

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Finally, some good news!

The dumpster fire that is American politics makes it difficult to find anything good sometimes, and some days just feel so hopeless. How did the country become controlled by Mitch McConnell? Every day has its new gifts, from Trump being a general embarrassment to absolutely devastating news.

But some days have awesome news, like the incredible rates of voter turnout already occurring in some districts. Another wonderful piece of news that I read was that we have a record number of LGBTQ candidates running for office, which makes me so happy. Of course, 22,000 candidates are needed for equal representation, but every step closer is a step I will savor.

How about you? Have you read any great political news today? Share it in the chat.

Unfriending Over Politics

Depends on the politics!

Plenty of people are sharing memes about not unfriending people over politics these days, and I have to laugh. Politics are only an extension of values; do you not base your choice of friends on your own values? 

I get it if you're saying you're not going to unfriend someone because they have a difference of opinion on everything from pizza toppings to tax laws. But when you're talking about differing "opinions" over issues like whether someone else "deserves" the same rights you enjoy, or whether someone's own humanity comes into question, there's really nothing left to debate between us. In my book, we're done if you think people don't deserve healthcare or food or the right to marry whom they choose.

Have you had experiences like that this year? I'm sure most of us have. Share yours in the chat.

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Honoring RBG's Wishes

No SCOTUS Appointments Until January

Only hours after Ruth Bader Ginsburg left us, Mitch McConnell was already promising to vote on her replacement soon. This is the same Senate that can't pass an aid package for Americans during Covid-19 or even get the entire country to mask up, and it's the same Majority Leader who refused to vote on Merrick Garland when Barack Obama wanted to nominate him during the last opening during an election year.

The notorious RBG's last wish was to not be replaced until a new president is in office and that is what we need to do. Last night I spent some time calling a bunch of senators, asking that they postpone voting until after the election, and I'm going to continue to do so daily. I hope that you'll join me in these efforts. 

What else can we do to honor Ginsberg other than ensure her last wishes are fulfilled? Share your ideas in the chat.

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Getting Out the Vote During Covid

What is your strategy?

During an election year, many of us are typically on the ground volunteering, going door to door to chat with voters and getting the vote out however we can. This year, we need to maintain social distancing, which makes it much harder to talk to strangers about issues we care about.

Phonebanking is still very much an option if you're able to do that, but how else are you getting the vote out? You can still flyer neighborhoods as long as you keep your distance and it's in compliance with your local laws (and if you feel safe enough to do so). You can also still share petitions and information via social media, which can be helpful as well as harmful, depending on who you're sharing it with!

How are you getting the vote out this year? Share your ideas in the chat. 

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The Red Zone

Welp, we've made it

For weeks, my county has been teetering on the edge of being in the red zone as our Covid-19 cases and death rates rise and people social distance and wear masks less and less. Our governor refuses to issue a mandate and at least half of our residents think it's a 'liberal hoax' thanks to Trump, so now we've got a mess on our hands.

Our health department was able to issue a mask mandate... for one day. Then one of our many uber conservative representatives threatened to sue them because they didn't go through the proper channels, which admittedly they should have done--but they also shouldn't have had to. We should have leadership at the national and state levels to do this so our health department officials don't get death threats from our citizens.

How's the virus where you live? Is it getting better or worse? I hope you're safe and masking up.

Stop Putting Politics Over Human Lives

It's really dangerous

The United States response to the coronavirus has been abysmal at best. Even if our response had been average and on par with many other countries' responses, we'd have saved so many more lives. Calling this virus the Trump virus after the president refused to make it a priority is much fairer than saying things like masks don't work or that the death counts are overblown.

If anything, the death counts are underestimated. All you have to do is look at number of deaths in 2020 versus recent years and you can see how there are vastly more deaths. But people like to politicize it and say that it's only a Democrat hoax or election ploy even as victims die. 

How have you seen it shared as a political tool of division? Perhaps a better question is which countries do you think have handled it best? Could we still do the same?