Believing in America

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category icon Editorials, Opinion

Believing in America

If anything is crystal clear following this national election cycle, it is that the United States is a country divided.

2016 produced a General Election like no other in history. Both presidential candidates, Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, were marred by scandals of varying levels. Their political leanings and past decisions were criticized, picked apart and called into question, to degrees that have never been seen before. Some argued that the choices for president were dismally inadequate and even embarrassing, while others defended their chosen candidate to the bitter end.

Unexpectedly, and some would say astonishingly, Trump — a New York real estate developer and reality television star who has never before served in elected office — overcame unlikely odds and on Tuesday, Nov. 8, was voted into office as the nation’s 45th president.

During the final month of campaigning, Trump was asked more than once if he would “accept” the election results. It was a loaded question that always elicited vague, coy answers. In the end, however, it turned out to be Clinton who had to find the right words to communicate to her supporters and the rest of the country that she would indeed support a peaceful transition of power.

Think what you may about Clinton’s politics and background, her concession speech provided some words of reason in an incredibly uncertain time.

“We must accept this result and then look to the future,” she said during the Nov. 9 address in New York, later adding “We owe [Trump] an open mind and a chance to lead.”

Clinton also acknowledged the deep divide that currently exists in America, but her statement that “I still believe in America and I always will,” is one that the rest of us should also continue to hold on to tightly. Trump is the next president, and citizens will need to pressure him to fully represent the people of America, and lead this country with dignity.

And as Americans, as Clinton urged, we should also do our part and “never stop believing that fighting for what’s right is worth it.”