We Succeed or Fail Together

By, Linda Stockton

Remember when Barack Obama became the President in 2008? We were divided as a nation become some of us we’re ecstatic and some of us were…well…not. And then, before he even took the oath of office, radio talk show host, Rush Limbaugh said this,

“I would be honored if the Drive-By Media headlined me all day long: ‘Limbaugh: I Hope Obama Fails.’ Somebody’s gotta say it.”

So, here we are, 2016. Another political upset with some of us ecstatic and some of us, clearly, again, not. And Michael A. Cohen,a staff writer for the Boston Globe, in his online column just wrote,

“I don’t want Trump to succeed. I want him to fail spectacularly.”

Simple question America: Have you ever owned or worked for a successful company, a business, a non-profit, a fund-raiser, or a cause that you cared about and said that you really wanted the person in charge to fail? Can you imagine doing so? And what exactly would that accomplish? Besides the loss of the job, the business, the good works, the needed assistance etc, it is, as my mother was fond of saying, cutting off your nose to spite your face.

The ill will and bitterness does not hurt the President or the Office. Let me repeat. It does not hurt the President! It damages the country. It affects the very fabric and nature of our culture and our society. Look at what we have achieved thus far in the week since Election Day. Riots, violence at schools, demands for safe spaces at colleges, an erosion of our 1st amendment rights (see Ben Shapiro at DePaul), disgusting graffiti and hate speech, and an alarming decline in our ability to converse with one another with even a modicum of civility. Do you think for one second that ANY of this keeps either President Obama or President-Elect Trump awake at night? Do you think that they will be crushed to know that some folks blame them, one way or another, for all of their anger and problems? No. No, they don’t. Because they are both doing what they were elected to do, for better or worse. They are attempting to govern. Obama trying to pass the torch and Trump trying to accept it.

I completely understand the emotion and disappointment of not having the person you want to lead our country. I felt that in 2012. It can feel sad and hopeless. I get it…totally. I am less understanding of the gloating and childish mockery from the hard-core Trump supporters. Kicking someone when they’re down doesn’t sit well with me no matter the circumstance. Not to mention the savage and vitriolic rhetoric from both sides..that is beneath us all. But, you know what? Your protests will not make Trump fail. Your cruel and intolerant behavior towards others will not make Trump fail. Your asinine antics and belittling your neighbor because their point of view is different from your will not make Trump fail. But, it will ensure that WE, as a nation and as a people, fail spectacularly. The farther and deeper the divide, the more difficult it will be to mend. It is time now, to put on our big boy or big girl panties and face our future with the circumstances we have. If we fail, we all fail together. The good news is, that if we can succeed, that too, we can do together.

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