Clearly discussion around this election is heated. Not just between the candidates, but also between neighbors, colleagues and friends. Sadly, the discussion between strangers can be the worst.
The disrespect, the hate and the venom can be alarming. It rattles my confidence in our ability to work together to address our country's issues. Especially after the election is over. In just a few days.
Too bad we can't take our lead from AmyS and remember that despite our differences, we're all part of the same family.
Yesterday I took my sister to Akron, Ohio, to see McCain and Palin. She is a life long Republican, and she was very excited to see Palin. Conversely, I am a life long Democrat, and I think the last Republican I voted for nationally was Ronald Reagan. Needless to say, she and I often disagree. But we find a lot to agree on as well.
We live 150 miles away and had to leave for the rally early in the morning. We arrived hours before it started. We were bustled in to a very large high school stadium in a part of the country where the love of football is next to the love of God and country. There were a lot of young people in the stadium, and, although I have only attended one other Republican event in my life, it certainly did not have all these young people in attendance. I'm not sure about the attendance but would say maybe 12,000 or so attended. The media may not like Palin, but the public is certainly intrigued.
Although the event was very festive with lots of excitement, the day was hampered by violence after the rally. But not the type CNN has been reporting where the rally attendees are yelling racial slurs and calling Obama a terrorist. We saw none of this.
Instead, while we were making our way back to the car, we noticed a few protesters with signs standing near the street. Although some of the signs were appropriate, listing the reasons we should be voting for Obama, others were appalling and received the exact type of response elicited.
For example, one of the signs said something to the effect, "Wait till you see who's nailing Palin." The young woman holding this sign and an elderly veteran began debating the appropriateness of this sign. The old vet then grabbed the sign and tore it to pieces. But immediately before this, this same vet had a heated argument with a young male protester about the war. The vet proceeded to comment that they have the right to protest because of men like his son and himself. The young protester said war was not the answer and other things I could not hear. Somewhere it became more heated, and the old vet screamed, "My son gave his life for a @#$%^ like you." A middle aged man came to rescue the situation and walked the vet away with his arms around his shoulders.
Another man was videotaping the event, I suppose to give to some parasitic media outlet. But what bothered me most was this whole scene seemed almost provoked and calculated. The signs were clearly meant to invoke a response, and the video had a predesigned purpose as well. I'm sure this old man will be villainized. But I felt for the old guy.
My sister and I, then went to dinner and had a nice drive home talking about the events of the day and the current state of our country.
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