I’m with Trump. Are you?

I’m with Trump.

That doesn’t mean he got my vote. It doesn’t mean we share the same values. The fact is, what appeared on my ballot on Nov. 8 — for or against the president-elect — is not important today. America chose Donald Trump as its next president, and it’s time to practice what we preach.

Supporters of Hillary Clinton — or in some cases, simply opponents of Trump — focused their campaign message on community, empathy, inclusion, equality. At its core, Clinton’s message commanded unity under the campaign slogan  “Stronger Together.”

Why, then, are some Americans rioting following her defeat? It will certainly prove difficult for Trump to destroy the country, as some of his opponents predict, if there is nothing left for him in January.

Not all Clinton supporters are violent or destructive, of course. Just as not all Trump supporters are uneducated, racist misogynists. I truly believe that most people are inherently good, and their vote on Election Day didn’t reflect the worst of their candidate’s qualities. This country simply wants change, and that is something both candidates promised.

Trump’s platform boasted tighter security and a stronger economy. His plans were vague and poorly communicated, but it’s difficult to argue against the safety and security of our families.

Clinton, on the other hand, said “let’s keep our children safe but also provide refuge for others.” She wanted to bring opportunity to lower income and middle-class individuals.

When you look beyond impulsive, hateful comments and email investigations, these two candidates look pretty similar. They are people, and like the rest of us, their imperfections speak louder than their strengths. But underneath the media’s veil of unforgivable offenses is the simple belief that America could do better — we could do better.

That begins now.

Clinton said it best when she asserted, “Donald Trump is going to be our president. We owe him an open mind and a chance to lead.”

There is no reason today to fear for our friends, regardless of race, culture, religion, gender or sexual identity. There is no reason to fear for our freedoms.

A new presidency is not an end; it’s a beginning. And until January, we don’t know what a Trump presidency will look like. I am hopeful that he will enter the Oval Office with a clear mind and the intent to serve all U.S. citizens.

It’s time for friends to heal relationships ruined by the presidential campaign. It’s time to promise to fight for each other, despite our differences. It’s time to stop criticizing others over their political choices.

Who knows what the next four years will bring? But we are destined to fall if we allow the divisiveness of the recent election to continue into the next presidency.

I’m with Trump. Are you?

¯¯¯

News editor Julianne Cahill can be reached at jcahill@lewistownsentinel.com.

COMMENTS