I woke up this morning to sun and clear skies, outside Boston, hope in my heart.
Rain+fog+wind kept me in the area an extra night as attempting to drive home for this new, New Englander was a bit scary at night.
That had me think about other things that could be scary on the last day before the day.
The news that a candidate's supporters surrounded another candidate's campaign bus to the point of them being boxed in, was more than disconcerting. As was pepper spraying those marching to the polls in a sign of unity to hecklers of voters, all of this is disconcerting.
I live in the tri state. New York had hate-filled trucks blocking access into New. York.
In Boston, I saw more signs of unity, hope, and promise, we saw only one lone dude in Back Bay with a sorry attempt to swing for a side that is completely opposite that.
What struck me as I was able to stay in bed on Saturday and Sunday morning was the report that 94 millions have already voted. Many more stood in line over the weekend to vote. A friend of mine stayed in line 3 1/2 hours in St. Louis so she could be a part of choice.
America is diverse. It has always been diverse, even if one does not want to embrace people who do not look like the color of snow. What is the problem with a diverse America?
I decided to spend some time in hope.
In Cambridge, I went to Harvard Square, drenched in rain, but went anyway. There were so many people of every hue, language, and origin walking up and down the square. I saw a church declare without hesitation that Black Lives Matter. In fact, I saw those signs everywhere I went in Massachusetts, from Wellesley to Waltham to Newton. I did a drive to just be, this past weekend was one of my darkest, so I needed to just feel and muse. I smiled at every sign. It was a sign of promise.
Let's face it, 2020 has been a hard year.
It started with so much hope and wonder for me. It was (is) my sorority's centennial year, it is 100 years since women had the right to vote (albeit white women, Black and women of color were not guaranteed the franchise until 1965), it was my older daughter's graduation year from high school and my youngest son's graduation with his second master's degree. My seminary friends were graduating, we were moving (and did). But it quickly turned dark before the first quarter was even over.Covid 19 hit us like a ton of bricks.
It has been a hard year made even harder by the hateful rhetoric coming from the highest office in the lane, pouring gasoline over the flames of unrest that this same office stoked going back to 2008.
Every fire, though destructive and attention getting and damaging and harmful, eventually goes out.
I have to believe that this fire is a last attempt, a dying gasp of a dying viewpoint.
Change can come, can be.
It is the last day before the last day.
All the people who are braving cold here in New England or in the Midwest, those who danced in the heat, those who are standing or sitting, that is the shift for an America we want. Where my daughter's have as much promised opportunity as my sons, their gender not hindering them. Where our skin color is seen as a testament of the beauty of the Creator instead of a defect. More and more people are sun kissed.
The generation of first time voters, those 18 and 19 years olds, are actually the most diverse America has ever seen. That is joy and wonder for me. These young people are aware, accepting, and amazing.
Perhaps that is what scares those who are grasping with a death grip to a message of hate, division, and a supremacy that was never their's. They crawled out from trailer parks and rocks in flannel shirts, pickup trucks, and the ugliest displays. One of the things about them though, they think they are strength in numbers, but they are really scared, frightened, cowards, who can only bluster. What scares them is that they fear an America that does not adhere to their narrow viewpoint.
So, on the day before the final day, I'm not afraid. I'm rightfully preparing and have concerns for those in key states who will have to see these yokels, but I am not afraid. I am patient, and waiting. I look in the eyes of my children and see a future. Still.
Change can come.
That is my hope.