I want to say here and now that I am Not At All politically savvy. This is not a political statement or opinion. This is a citizen, a worker, a wife, a mom speaking from the heart.
I sit here this morning in my living room, head full of moments from the last two weeks of travel to Budapest, Hungary and various parts of India. There is so much I want to write about - the beauty and irony of these two countries, amazing memories with family that we traveled with and became a part of, the craziness of cramming it all in, and the jet lag that follows. All of that will come. At this particular moment, though, the humor of life is buried beneath an overwhelming disbelief of what is happening all around us.
They go hand in hand. One begets the other. Right now there is a person spewing hate to this whole country. He has followers. That alone terrifies me to the core. You would think I'd fear terrorists more, but to me a terrorist is one with an unquenchable thirst for control. What separates this alleged presidential candidate from them?
I am sickened by the knowledge that any individual could belch out such a warped agenda and make it Word. I have literally lost sleep over the fact that every day I'm reading stories of innocent people who have suddenly become the enemy to those who buy into this perverted concept and are being verbally and physically attacked.
I can't wrap my head around how we got here and how anyone - ANYONE - could possibly agree with the absolute crap is being hoisted upon us as the way to save our country - by someone who had it all handed to him. Does anyone truly believe he can relate to the working middle class who have jumped on his "Make America Great Again" bandwagon? We may be good enough to bring the car around or serve his coffee - that's it. He doesn't 'get' you. He Will Never Get You.
This has hit me hard since we returned from our trip for a few reasons. While Budapest has come a long way in moving forward there was still that post-war feel in some areas. But I could see that our second born had a certain air of confidence as tour guide during our visit. She felt safe and so did we, despite the fact that this was a very unfamiliar environment.
In India we were the ones who stood out, with our fair skin and obvious cluelessness about the culture. Still, other than taking the warnings about pickpockets very seriously, I don't think any of us felt unsafe or at all threatened at any time. We were warmly embraced by our son-in-law's family and invited to participate in the Indian/Bengali wedding ceremony of our daughter and her husband. The whole experience of seeing these two countries was the trip of a lifetime.
They say there's no place like home. That's true, and we were very glad to be back in our own surroundings. But something has happened, a seed has been planted for an insidious branch of malice that I don't understand.
We just came back from a place where Islam is the second largest religion. We were surrounded by people who were Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, Christian, and a couple of religions I had never heard of who - like us - were sightseeing and spending time with families, living their everyday lives.
Since returning home, it shakes me up to say that my husband and I have had a conversation we never thought we'd have. We are actually concerned that, if the contorted state of mind this candidate is projecting continues to spread, people who look even slightly different (i.e. not white bread American) - like our son-in-law and his family who we love dearly - could potentially be in danger just walking down the street.
If we have not fully come to our senses and this candidate somehow manages to win the nomination, whether he wins the presidential vote or not, that nomination will be another nail in the coffin of this country's fate. That's exactly what the terrorists are waiting for - to divide and conquer - and he is just the man to provide them with our heads on a silver platter. I firmly believe that.
There are a hundred better ways to say what I'm clumsily trying to express. Every part of me wants to change the direction of those who think constantly being suspicious and on the defensive is how we should live. I just keep hoping anyone who is considering bringing this person into office will have an epiphany of sanity before it's too late. We need to open our eyes and use our voices. We need to learn more about those who are different rather than conclude that different is bad.
We need to stop following fear.