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Let us not Forget

November 19, 2012

Published here on November 7, 2012

As of my writing this – since I am writing this on Tuesday – I don’t know who will be the next President of the United States. However, I do know that half of you reading this are pleased with last night’s election results, and the other half you, well, not so much.

Despite what any naysayers think, let us not forget that whoever is taking the reins of our government this January is not going to ruin the country. As pointed out by Gil Troy, a professor of history at McGill University, in a recent New York Times article, most presidents have swayed from the extremes of their campaign platforms towards a more neutral middle once in office.

Let us not forget that both George W. Bush and Barack Obama approved massive economic stimulus plans when in office. Party lines meant little to them when it came to the rapidly plummeting state of our economy. Let us not forget that both of these men reacted to foreign attacks, Bush toward 9/11 and Obama toward the Libya attack, by seeking out the attacker and taking precautions to keep the rest of our country safe.

There are disagreements over hot-button issues such as abortion and healthcare, but let us not forget that our next man in office sincerely has the intention of bettering our country. Issues such as what to do about Iran and how to fix the economy have different paths towards success. The two major political parties disagree on what those paths are, but each has the same end goal in sight.

It’s easy to get caught up on focusing on the wrong things. This applies to every single area of life, well beyond the outcome of Election Day.  If your candidate lost last night, I am sure that you are now very nervous for the future of our country. What will happen to your job possibilities after you graduate? Will you be able to afford healthcare? Are we going to be able to stop catastrophically sending ourselves into national debt? Questions like these are completely understandable, and I’m sure that I will be thinking the same ones on Wednesday as well, regardless of who won.

Let us not forget that Ronald Reagan, despite all of the cliches about the Republican Party sending women back in time, appointed the first female Supreme Court justice. Dwight D. Eisenhower kept the extremely Democratic Social Security Program. Let us not forget that Bush went back on his word when he, in fact, did raise taxes to help ease the rate at which the deficit was rising. Romney instated the healthcare plan in Massachusetts, the plan that Obamacare was based upon. Clinton encouraged private expression of religion inside public schools saying that we “need not leave religion at the schoolhouse door.”

Let us not forget that, despite the trends in recent years, politics is still about governing our country, and the men and women that have been elected understand that. It’s quite easy to become cynical and claim that our system is broken, but let us not forget that no one sincerely goes into politics for the fame and fortune. While you may be frustrated and annoyed, especially if you actually went out and voted, I don’t think that we are going to cease to exist as a country four years from now.

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