It happens every four years. Every four years, we elect a President, and, inevitably, one of the big two party candidates wins, and one of them loses. Politics has become such an intense spectator sport that, inevitably, the outcome inspires mocking victory cries from those who backed the winner and statements of exasperation from those who backed the loser. My Facebook feed has been chocked with friends expressing a desire to run off to Canada in the face of Romney losing, or, worse, exclaiming that we as a country are sunk because Obama got another four years. I had silenced them all several months ago, but turned them all back on this morning in the hopes of getting a chuckle or two, but, instead, I got very shocked at what I saw. Many of my Romney backing friends have already moved past shock and guilt and are currently stuck in the anger stage. Meanwhile, many of my Obama backing friends are lording his re-election over everyone else. There's some scary stuff out there coming from my friends on both sides of the aisle that I would never have imagined I would have heard.
I understand where it's all coming from. It's tough to have your candidate lose after a long, intense campaign. This past one in particular seemed to be much more bitterly divisive than the last. But, running off to Canada or deciding that you'll just sit under a rock for the next four years while the country implodes is not realistic. That's not the America I know. Americans don't just give up when they lose a battle. They continue the fight because this country is worth fighting for. If your guy won last night, great. Don't be complacent. There's still a lot of work to be done to move this country into the direction that you want. Keep pushing for what you believe in. If your guy lost, step back, understand why he lost and how you can fix that in the next cycle. Until then, though, don't take your pail and leave the sandbox. The President is just one part of the this great system given to us by the Founding Fathers. Use the other parts that they put in place for us to work for the change you want.
I have to admit, though, that the concept of a staunch Republican moving away to Canada intrigues me. At the very least, it would make for a good sitcom.