There’s something to be said for remembering we are all Americans in this divisive election year.

It’s easy to forget that, as we count down the days to Tuesday, some of us are anxious, worried and fearful of the outcome.

If President Trump is reelected, many will celebrate; many will not.

If Joe Biden wins, the same.

We have spent the past four years fighting, debating issues, angry, disappointed, scared.

The worst and best of us have emerged.

Rhetoric emboldened those to action who felt they had no voice, albeit often with frightening outcomes. Those battling what they saw as injustices became empowered to fight harder.

I don’t remember in my lifetime a more divisive country, which is precisely what our enemies want.

The more divided we are, the easier we fall, the more vulnerable to evil forces.

Perhaps the Nixon era was the nearest we have been to such partisan divide in modern times, but I was a teenager then and don’t remember the state of affairs being as hateful and vengeful as it is today.

By the time you read this, it will be three days to the U.S. presidential election.

We are all seeking relief and are focused on a good outcome.

It may be a close race; it could be a landslide.

If it is close, we may not know the outcome for several days, even weeks.

If it’s a landslide, we should know sooner.

Whatever the result, one side will be unhappy; the other, likely jubilant.

But we should remember that while celebrating is good, focusing on another’s misfortune is not. Being a sore loser, and acting on it, is likewise dangerous.

When the election is over and our votes counted, we must move forward, absent any unforeseen issues.

Moving ahead doesn’t mean we have to sacrifice our values and convictions — we have the freedom to fight for what we believe in.

We may be Republican, Democrat, unenrolled or Green, but beyond that, we are all part of one country. We are all Americans. Those with whom we disagree politically may be our neighbors, family members, friends and co-workers.

We mustn’t forget that as Tuesday comes and goes.

We will always have differences of opinion — that’s what makes us who we are. We learn by listening to one another. We argue our points. We work to find compromise. And we go on.

Once the election is over, we shouldn’t gloat, condemn or incite, which only serves to create further divide.

As Americans, we can choose to walk a more dignified path.

Amy Calder has been a Morning Sentinel reporter 32 years. Her columns appear here Saturdays. She may be reached at [email protected]. For previous Reporting Aside columns, go to centralmaine.com.


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