This is the United States of America, not Donald Trump’s America

Yesterday, I woke up and my heart shattered into a million pieces.

Today, I went for a walk alone in the woods, and I cried.

I sat on the wet, leaf covered ground and I cried.

I sobbed.

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I feel alone.

I feel ashamed.

I feel heartbroken.

I feel lost in an endless circle of forgivable disrespect.

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Yes, “forgivable disrespect”.

Read that again and think about it.

We are living in a world where we are constantly disrespecting each other, knowingly or unknowingly, every single day. And we are getting away with it.

I had a boss once, take me into a room by myself and tell me I had to put on more makeup.

That hurt my feelings, but I allowed myself to be disrespected and I went on with my life. I guess you could say I forgave him.

Remember when Kanye humiliated Taylor on stage at the VMA’s. That was rude, but life went on, for everyone.

Today, I see people being disrespected and judged entirely based on a bubble they filled in with a marker in a private booth on November 8th.

I see angry rants on Facebook from people I did not even know had such fierce emotions inside of them.

That is okay. That is great. Please shower the world with your fears, your desires and what makes you upset. That is necessary. You are scared. We are all scared.

These feelings are human nature. People get caught up in their emotions and make crude comments and act out. That will never stop. But let us please tone down the disrespect.

On all sides.

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We have all acted in disrespectful ways.

In a perfect world, we would think through our actions and how they will reflect harmony. We would make all of our choices based on a positive outcome for ourselves, our neighbors, for the greater good of the country, for the world.

But this is not a perfect world. A perfect world is impossible to reach, mostly because we all have a different outlook on what “a perfect world” means to us.

So like I said, I feel lost, in a circle of forgivable disrespect.

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We are fighting our problems with more problems.

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I cried again today.

I cried because I know how impossible it feels to reach a goal you are so passionate about.

I am so passionate, not about a Republican candidate or a Democratic one. I am so passionate about the authentic happiness of each and everyone of us.

There is a problem with this, though.

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Money. Fame. Equality. Travel. Education. Experience. Love. Righteousness. Power.

Unfortunately we all have a different vision of what brings, or what we think brings us joy.

Fortunately, that is what makes us all unique. That is what gives us all the opportunity to fight for and climb our own personal ladder of happiness.

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We all get upset.

And that is okay. That is necessary.

People SHOULD be upset. We just had an election, so at least half of the country SHOULD be upset, because their candidate did not win.

But coloring in a bubble does not change me, or you, as a person.

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Groups of people who spent months preaching “Stronger Together” are now causing riots, disrupting peace and destructing property.

Groups of people who preached “Make America Great Again” are now beating up and yelling racial slurs at people they don’t even know.

Groups of people who spent months preaching the importance of “love” are now bombarding Facebook with hurtful messages towards any and all individuals who filled in a bubble on a ballot for a name they did not approve of.

Groups of people who spent months fighting for a man they believe can make change are now taking us backwards in a spiral of negativity.

Groups of people who say that they are fighting for “equal rights” are creating a divide between…everyone.

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Coloring in a bubble does not change me, or you, as a person.

We all could have gone into the voting booth with a blindfold on.

An election did not cause this, it only pushed it to a deeper and darker level.

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Is violence the answer?

Is protesting the answer?

Is silence the answer?

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A man who has disrespected women is now going to be our president.

A man who, before the primaries, was seen as “a joke” is now going to hold the position of “Commander in Chief”.

A man who does not view climate change as a primary concern in 2016 is going to make the calls.

But, it is just a position.

It is one person.

You are one person.

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The role as president, undoubtedly is an important role.

However, is it truly the most important?

Or are you the most important?

And me.

I think maybe we are overlooking the important roles we hold as individual people of America.

We make the calls.

Everyday we have the choice to act the way we do. Whether we wake up and decide to be kind to everybody who crosses our path, or we wake up with a mask of hatred. Either way, it is your choice, it is my choice.

I choose to show gratitude and respect in each action I take. I hope you can do that too.

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This is still America.

This is still the land of the free and home of the brave.

This is still a place where YOU have a VOICE.

Nobody has taken your freedom of speech.

Nobody has taken away the person you were two days ago.

You are still the same person.

You still have all of the potential you did two days ago.

Use that voice for positivity.

Make a difference, in a good way.

“Treat people the way you wish to be treated”, no matter how you have been treated in the past, no matter how our new president has treated people in the past.

IT DOES NOT MATTER HOW ANYBODY HAS TREATED ANYBODY IN THE PAST.  WAKE UP RIGHT NOW AND CHANGE THE WAY YOU PLAN TO TREAT PEOPLE.

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You are missing something if you do not believe Donald Trump has gotten away with much forgivable disrespect.

But I think at this point in time, we have to give him a chance. There is a reason America put him where he is now.

I have never personally met the guy, and I know who he is mostly based off of what the TV tells me.

I know him based off of out-dated videos of a young Trump, making rude comments about women or gays or people of varying cultures or religions.

I know him based off of what I am told I should know about him.

But no, I have never met him, never sat down and had a conversation with the guy who is about to be Mr. President.

Heck, I never knew Mr. Obama either.

Can’t say I’ve had a lunch date with Bill or Hillary Clinton either.

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Did you know that Donald Trump used to call himself a Democrat?

Did you know that Hillary Clinton stole from the Whitehouse?

Again, it is impossible to know if all of these pieces of information are true. But it is what we hear.

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We have never chosen an angel to run the Oval Office.

We have never chosen a devil either.

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Donald Trump is, yes “a rich white bastard” but heck I am sure one or two of your uncles or grandfathers were too.

Hilary Clinton is a female who lied about some stuff and didn’t dump her cheating husband. Show of hands, has anybody out there done that before?!

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Nobody is perfect.

This country is not perfect.

But it is OUR country.

It is where we live, where we strive, where we love, we grow, we build, we make mistakes, we come together, we fight for what we believe in, we disagree, we challenge one another, we mourn, we celebrate, we collaborate.

This is the United States of America.

This is not Donald Trump’s America.

It was never Obama’s America or Reagan’s America. It was never George Washington’s America or Bush’s America.

Our president is not out to get you.

You may feel like right now the world is ending because you felt so passionately about our country going in a different direction.

But hey, it is time to stop calling  your sister a “bitch” for voting for Donald Trump, and it is time to stop telling your friends that they don’t care about you because you are Gay. It is time to stop burning American flags and attacking people who are different than you.

It is time to stop shitting on the opposing team, because this is America and we are ONE nation under God. Yes, you have the choice to call yourself a Democrat or a Republican, you have the choice to be Liberal. But no matter how you register yourself to vote, you are still an American Citizen.

That is the beauty of this country. You can change your mind. You can change the way you think and you can SHARE the way you think. And people will listen. Not everybody will agree with everything you think or have to say, but we can all agree on one thing, and that is that we are Americans.

We are Americans who accept each other.

We learned immediately in school that we live in a “Melting Pot” called America.

Most importantly we are Americans who care, we are passionate.

How about we take that passion, and instead of fueling horrifying fires of hatred we light some candles of kindness. Be nice to your neighbor, smile at the stranger on the sidewalk. Wave to the construction workers on the side of the road.

Tell somebody to have a nice day.

I do not understad where we hold onto all of this anger inside of us. But it has become very obvious that we let it out in times of disagreement.

I do not know if we take things too personally.

I do not know if we are crying for attention.

I do not know if we are fearful.

I do not know if we are so confused we side with the first opporutnity we see.

What I do know is that even the most open minded of us all, are a little bit too closed minded.

The most success will come when we work as a team.

Because the thing is, America IS GREAT, and we already are STRONG TOGETHER.

Those are just phrases to get you to choose a side. The election was a competition. No different than a basketball game, a spelling Bee or a chili cook off. No matter what the competition is, you are trying to win votes, spell “Hospital” correctly or please more people in the crowd with Grandma’s secret chili sauce.

WHATEVER the competition is, the competitors are trying to get ahead. And this year, unfortunately the way to get ahead was quite childish, by both our opponents, and now, unfortunately that childish behavior has been passed along to the American people with strong opinions.

#notmypresident is not an option. He is your president. That is how the cookie crumbled. Like it or not, the next four years mean Donald Trump is my president and your president. He is our president. Let us take a deep breath and open our mind to the possibility that we can deal with this in the best way we know how, and that is as an American Citizen.

It only takes an action, a statement, a moment in time to change an opinion or an act. Let us take this moment, these present and future moments to change the way we are acting, to tighten our reigns on positivity and let go of treating each other like dirt.

We care for each other. I know we do. But we must dig a little deeper right now, to find the love we have for our neighbors.

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