The election hoopla is over. George W. Bush won another four years, this time with no doubt about his capturing both the popular vote and the electoral college. There is much gloating on one side, much cheering each other up on the other. The gloating is understandable but offends my ears, and I am on the winning side. The most remarkable fact of the election this year in my opinion was that 3 million more people voted than did four years ago. That's a lot of people stirred out of apathy. If that many people would stay interested in upcoming legislation, court decisions, etc., perhaps our democratic experiment could have the chance to shake off the torpor of helplessness so many people feel in the face of complex globalization issues, war, ubiquitous media influence, and the general harassments of day to day living in a world of voice mail routing systems, cell phone mania etc. We cannot afford to indulge in feelings of helplessness. There is work to be done.
I have not heard from or seen any of the Bush-haters among my friends except for Lisa. I tried to be conciliatory but came off, I fear, as irritatingly magnanimous as only a winner can be. I don't know what to say to Nancy, to Ellen, to Susan. I hope that their fears of apocalypse if George W. wins can find relief without furthering dividing them from ... to be selfish about it ... me. This campaign was a civil war of sorts and the wounds hurt. No wonder it is 150 years later and the South still resents the North.