WOW! What a crazy night that was. So many twists and turns and an ending that nobody really thought would happen. But here we are. Donald Trump will be our next president.
There are a lot of thoughts going on in my head and I want to share them. I don’t really care if you read it. I don’t care if you agree or not. But I do want to at least share my thoughts on it in hopes that we can have better dialogue together. Because even though we are at a time with this country is so divided, I still want to believe that we all will be OK. I hope that we will still be a united country.
But before I even go into my thoughts, I will tell you everything about my political views so that you understand me better. You may not agree with my viewpoint but I want to be honest. Maybe being honest is the way we need to be to help each other.
- I am a Chinese-American male born in Oakland, California currently living in Southern California.
- I am 30 years old and my parents immigrated to America in the early 80s.
- I am not a Republican.
- I am not a Democrat.
- I vote for whomever I think best represents me and the future I want for this country. If that person is a Democrat, then I vote for that person. If that person is a Republican, I vote for that person. If that person is from another party, I vote for that person.
- I am also a Christian. (I will share my views as a Christian also in this post.)
As the election trail started I thought that maybe Bernie Sanders might be the best candidate to represent me. But the more I thought about, the more unsure I was. Then when Hillary Clinton was chosen, I thought that maybe she might be OK. But I have to do more research on her views and see if she would be someone I supported. I never went onto social media to really engage in any discussions about this. I dislike doing that stuff and I was not informed enough to even be in any discussions.
Then Donald Trump came along. And everything that he did, he said and all his baggage was a turnoff for me. He had no prior experience. He showed that he didn’t respect women. He didn’t respect people of color — especially those who weren’t from America. He didn’t respect people of different faiths or lifestyles. He mocked the disabled. He seemed to harbor on the fears of people and I didn’t think that he had a real shot at the presidency.
As election day neared, the months leading up to it was I was still unsure who I wanted. Trump was clearly not the person I wanted to lead this country. I looked at Hillary and she had some stuff I wasn’t sure with but I wasn’t too opposed to her being president. But I wasn’t fully confident.
The biggest issue for me, sadly, was that I spend a lot of my time on the computer. I work in media so naturally I come across a lot of things I see on news sites and social media.
There was a huge divide among my Facebook friends. People were threatening each other. People were calling out other candidates and accusing each other. There were people unfriending one another because of political views. It was harsh. I don’t recall it being that intense during the last election. But the last election didn’t feature a huge social media presence like it did then. We have allowed it to become a social media election.
Then on Twitter, all the hot takes and quick updates were disheartening. I would see Trump’s Twitter say things that made me uncomfortable. I apparently saw so much support for Clinton and I thought that maybe that was the projection of what the American public was feeling too. So I thought that maybe Clinton would end up being president. I live in California — it’s not a swing state. It was going to be Democrat no matter what. That’s exactly what happened in the electoral college.
I always knew that because I lived in California, I was raised in an environment that taught me to view things in a certain way. I never grew up in the Midwest. I lived in New York for two months and that is the longest time I have ever stayed in the East Coast. But I knew that the entire country didn’t see everything the way I did. Why would they? We have people who believe the vision Clinton had. We have people who believe in the vision Trump had. I didn’t fully understand either vision, but I knew that people did.
I didn’t think that that many people saw the vision of Trump to the point that it would get enough electoral votes. I was surprised but not shocked at this. At the same time, I honestly was wondering if I could buy into Clinton’s vision. It was better than Trump’s vision, that’s for sure. I was totally OK if Clinton did win the election. At least she didn’t threaten my well-being and those around me.
But I knew that no matter who won, there would be divide among the people. How it would happen, I didn’t know. I am living in the unfolding of it all right now.
Oh, and the following bit of info is pretty disappointing. Nearly half the country didn’t vote.
The divide among my friends really hurt me. And because I don’t have a background in caring about politics to any extent, I don’t even know if I have a solid well factually-based opinion on things. But we are in America and my opinion is just as valid as yours. I may not know as much, but don’t discredit my thoughts and concerns. A Trump supporter’s opinion is just as valid. A Clinton supporter’s opinion is just as valid. We might not agree with one or the other, but we cannot discount anyone with a thought to be invalid — even if we think that person is completely wrong. We can’t as a nation be divided like this.
I have friends who are serious supporters of Trump. I have friends who are serious supporters of Clinton. I will keep those friendships with them. My friendships were never built on the foundation of politics. (I am politically ignorant, which is why none of my friendships were built on politics — I just don’t talk about it.) I know some of my friends who support certain initiatives or viewpoints that I may not understand why. But never at any point did those viewpoints threaten me in any way.
But here we have Trump. He sure did say a lot of things that threatened me. For the first time, I don’t feel comfortable with the direction that we are going in if he truly enacts on these things.
I look at my friends who are Trump supporters. Do they truly believe everything that he says? Or are they just agreeing on certain aspects of things of his campaign? I guess this is where my personality comes into play. I don’t like generalizing. I like to get to know everyone as they are individually. Here are some of many questions I want to ask.
- Did you vote for Trump because you agreed with his viewpoints on certain minorities, people of certain faith and other people who are different?
- Did you vote for Trump because you were OK with his ugly history on the way he treats women?
- Did you vote for Trump because of his plans to change our education system?
- Did you vote for Trump because he comes from a business background?
- Did you vote for Trump because he comes off as a straight shooter?
- Why did you vote for him knowing he has a lot of baggage?
I want to believe that Trump can bring some potential positives here, but I am not sure what it is. It depends on his cabinet and the people whom he will have around him. Not all Republicans are bad. Which is probably why I still want to look on the bright side of things even though it looks real dark now.
But I still want to know why people voted the way they did. If a friend of mine is a Trump supporter and that friend believes in the president-elect’s hurtful and hateful views on minorities, Muslims, women, disabled, etc., then I think have an issue with that friend. But what if that friend isn’t OK with that but saw the other viewpoints of his campaign and thought that would be good for America?
Let’s talk about it — all of it. Let’s have a thoughtful discussion. Let’s try to understand each other. No name-calling. No assumptions. We may not agree on some things but can we agree that we want what is best for this country? Oh, we have different viewpoints? Let’s talk about it. You actually agree with some of the hurtful things he said? I don’t like it but I still want to know why. Let’s talk.
The things that Trump said and has done is hurtful. It’s hateful. It’s not right. That’s how I see it. But I can’t in good conscience clump every Trump supporter as that exact same replica. Does voting for Trump mean that it was full support of everything that he has said and done? I don’t think so. Or maybe it does. Let’s have that conversation so I can learn and understand more.
I don’t want this country to be divided. Yet right now it is. I don’t feel comfortable with Trump as our next president. But as an ever optimist, I still believe that our country can still be united. Despite differences, we are the UNITED States. I think that if our goal as a country is to strive for the best, then can we try to work together to achieve that? If we are on different sides of the spectrum, can we find a middle ground? Not for everything, that I know for sure. But I don’t think it’s impossible for the country to still be united and be OK.
I won’t give up on us that easily. We just have to find that path together. Hopefully soon.
And the crazy thing about politics in general is that you would easily assume that all Christians should all agree on which party is the right party. Nope. Not even close. But that’s OK.
Shane Claiborne, a pastor who seems to think along the same lines I do, once said that our identity as Christians is not to our political party. Our identity is not to a candidate. Our identity is Jesus Christ. He is who we serve. He is our King.
My church shared this post this morning.
I think the reason why I never got into politics because I have seen the cloud it puts over people of my faith. I have seen too much divide to see any real hope in it. I have seen friends who are so caught up being a liberal or conservative they have said or done things that is not Christ-like at all. Yes, we have a system and yes we should ask the Lord to bless our leaders. But the leaders aren’t whom I worship. It is God. The God who has gifted us with so many blessings. It is the God who sent Jesus to save me. Jesus is my King.
And in this time of difficulties in this country, I trust in God’s future for me. I don’t hold onto the uncertainty of an American system. I never have. Those can falter. God never does.
My faith isn’t in Clinton. My faith isn’t in Trump. My faith isn’t in a specific party. My faith lies in the Creator. It is God whom I follow and God whom I believe in.
I know for some people who don’t believe in God or have issues with Christianity that may think I am crazy for putting so much stock on something that you can’t tangibly see and that I seemingly ignore the reality that is right here in front of us. How can you not be angry at those who you disagree with?
Yes. I agree. It is crazy. It doesn’t compute. It doesn’t make sense. I should be angry at all the people I don’t agree with.
But for me, I don’t think I can see it that way. Not after in which how I know Jesus Christ. (BTW, if you want to know more about my faith, feel free to ask me about it.)
To me, Jesus has shown me that there is a way to act during these times when there is so much divide, opposition and hate. Jesus was in the center of that His entire life of ministry here on earth. He saw things one way. Leaders who opposed Him saw things another way. Jesus had people on His side. Jesus also had people who were against Him.
Yet throughout the entire time, Jesus never called anyone hurtful names like we are seeing right now. He spent time with people who disagreed with Him. He spent time with outcasts. He talked thoughtfully with everyone. And when He had to, He was also tough when He needed to be. He is who I want to model my actions like. To me at a time like this, it’s the only response that makes sense to me.
Jesus acted in love. I want to do the same.
In a time of darkness, confusion, uncertainty, Jesus is hope. I know not every person views our country as one that is in despair. But still, Jesus remains as my hope. Maybe your hope as well.
So this is how I stand as a Christian. It didn’t matter who won the election. I would have still prayed for our country. It didn’t matter who was president, I still would have prayed for our people because there will be division regardless of outcome. I look towards the future of America with hope of God’s presence every single day. I don’t have an affiliation with a party. I don’t need to align myself that way. I align my self with the only thing I can trust in that never fails: Jesus Christ as my savior.
I can’t name-call anyone. Give the finger to those who have a different opinion. I can’t start judging and hating people for it. That’s not Christ-like. My foundation is never on politics. It never was. It’s built on Jesus.
And one more thing, I want to share this note my friend (who is a pastor) wrote as well. It shares similar thoughts as mine and it is very thoughtful. CLICK HERE.
My prayer of hope.
Lord I pray for unity in this time of division.
I ask that you continue to bless us and watch over us.
I pray for your guidance in our government and in the laws that we have voted on.
Let us be a nation that doesn’t hate, but instead, is filled with care, compassion and love.
We may not agree but that doesn’t mean we can’t work together. I pray for us.
I pray for Donald Trump and his cabinet. May you Lord give them wisdom and guidance to lead America.
Ultimately, I want the honor and glory to be all yours, Jesus. Let your glory shine no matter what!
You are my King!