At a very young age, our parents taught us that two wrongs don't make a right. When Billy pushed you off the jungle gym, you weren't to push back; if Sally stole your Dunkaroos out of your lunch box, you weren't to steal hers.
What did this teach us? Well, it taught us that in no situation should you justify a wrongdoing against a person who has done wrong against you. So if your coworker steals from your wallet, you shouldn't steal from his, because then there are two thieves instead of one.
Now, in this time of division, I look around and wonder where that sentiment was lost. Sure, I ponder what the next four years will look like for us as Americans, parents, moms and wives, but more importantly, I wonder how it will be for our children.
And honestly, it is terrifying. Not because of who sits in office, not because of how new public policies may or may not affect us, but because of how we have started to treat each other when differences arise.
Our children are sponges -- they listen even in a room filled with noise and they soak up everything we say and do. If we sit around the table and rant about how awful one person may be, or how terrible those who voted for him are, aren’t we passing judgment? And if we sit and criticize one's appearance because he passed judgment on others, aren’t we both discriminating? So when our children start to hear these words, start to feel this hate in their own home, how will they respond to others?
Let us stop filling their minds with hate and clouding their judgment with disdain against those we may not see eye to eye with. Put your political affiliations aside and try loving everyone regardless of their vote, views or upbringing. If not, we are telling our children that when Jimmy calls you fat, you can call him stupid right back.
Let us revisit the sentiment our parents instilled in us as children -- that we are not to bully the bullies because we feel bullied. Because we are all just people, standing in front of one another, asking to be respected. We have that common ground. If you choose to love instead of hate, what's left for someone to hate about you?
We must teach our children by example that neither what God you worship nor whose box you checked on that Tuesday in November should change how we treat one another. Because as soon as we start pointing fingers, yelling at one another and calling each other names, we no longer represent what we’re fighting for because we both are guilty.
The idea of what could go wrong is clouding our views, our opinions and our emotions. But the fact of the matter is we have a president who is still driving the car and we are the passengers. And for that and many other reasons, I don't want him to crash or fail; I want him to succeed and get us safely to our destination. Although he may turn without a signal or flick off a driver in his rearview mirror, take a deep breath, buckle your seat belt and don't envision potholes that may not be in the road ahead.
Let's all take the gloves off, grab the hand of our child and lift the other to wave at your neighbor, regardless of what side of the fence they live on. For if our children not only do what we say but sees as we do, we will all be better off these next four, eight, twenty years to come.