It seems we have a projected winner of the White House, and in true 2020 fashion, it couldn’t happen clean and straightforward. As such, in the upcoming weeks, the cycle of “I told you so’s” and “You’re an idiot” seems to be primed to keep right on keeping on.
As a patriot, lover of America for all her beauty (and despite her faults), I’m ready to jump off this ride. That found me thinking aloud in the shower, how do we get it right in the mixing bowl that America is?
I am not a Rhodes Scholar, just a simple Ol’ infantryman. But, I have been working with and leading diverse groups of people for decades now. As such, I think I have a recipe to get us back to the colorful masterpiece we are meant to be.
- A heaping helping of humility. It is time that we put gloating aside. Someone had to win, and someone had to lose. Most importantly, no one should agree with anyone on everything, all of the time. If we go into every conversation with this in mind, we will become more tolerant of folks who see it differently.
- Two parts of Collaboration. As the adage goes, it takes two to tango, and right now, most Americans are shitty dance partners. You have to be willing to take turns taking the lead. You have to trust your partner to do what is best and honest, just as much as you expect them to do the same. It’s not that one side is right or one side is wrong; it’s slightly different perspectives on how to solve the same problem.
- Throw away the indignation. It’s been left setting out all night, and it’s gotten old.
- A pinch of perspective. No one is everything you think their candidate is—especially given that we are left with but two choices. Take the time to put yourself in the other person’s shoes and see the world from a slightly different view.
- Lastly, the recipe calls for an end to name-calling and personal attacks. Let’s go back to a simpler time when momma said if you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all. Guys, please listen to me; if you can’t make your point politely, you lose your point’s credibility. Remember, you never change an offended mind.
Put this all in a bowl, pour on a generous helping of love thy neighbor, and shake vigorously until all the hate falls out. I want my country back, and I am willing to share it with you.
I hope that we get back to being Americans, a country big enough for all people and strong enough to handle that diversity.