disclosure

Dear _______ Voter,

Dear ____ Voter, I don't hate you!

I don't hate you. I might disagree with you, but I don't hate you. In fact, I'm proud of you for exercising your right to free speech and doing your civic duty by voting. Sure, maybe your candidate has said or done some horrible things, but at the end of the day, I know you aren't voting for them because of those things, you're voting despite those things. At the end of the day, we were handed a terrible deck of cards and we, as Americans, chose the ones we thought could do what was right for our country. Are either of them stand up citizens? Probably not. Being a politician takes thick skin, and you don't get to the top without making a lot of tough decisions (and remember what mom always said - you can't please everyone).

I hope that after today, America can heal from all the damage that's been done during this campaigning season. I hope that you casted your vote based on who you believed in, and not who you felt you were forced to choose. I hope you will ultimately be satisfied no matter what the outcome is because you live in a free country ran under a democracy. I hope you were proud to vote today and that you didn't take that freedom and privilege for granted.

I hope that people can set their political beliefs aside in the coming years to rebuild the strong nation we once had. I hope that friendships that were broken can heal from the sharp, outspoken tongues that we all showed during this campaign season. Most of all, I hope that people can stop defining each other by their political preferences. The beauty of this country is that nobody is forced to think a certain way and we all have the freedom to think and believe how we choose. Far too often, I've seen people deleting each other or starting fights over politics and I just don't get it. I know brilliant, incredible people that are voting in ALL parties this election, and I don't think any less of them for doing so. In fact, my husband and I are voting completely opposite of each other, and you know what? I still love him. Ultimately, he supports who he has the most faith in, as do I. We don't have to divide ourselves into parties; we don't have to divide ourselves based on politics.

I think something that played a major factor in this election season was social media. People can hide behind a screen and say whatever they want without repercussions and so they feel more able to do so. It's led to some hateful words on all sides.

The biggest problem I have with this election season is not the candidates who are running; it's the supporters on all sides treating each other like less than human beings. Above all, we are human beings. We are Americans. Let's start acting like it.

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