Accepting the Difficult 12/16/20

Thoughts by Richard Bleil

To tell the truth, I’m really tired of the news these days. The US is flying our big bombers over Iran for escalation of the nuclear stress that we ourselves created, but all we seem to be hearing about is the ever-increasing Covid-19 infections and deaths, and the lawsuits over the election. I’m sure the Coronavirus will continue for a while. Yes, a vaccine has had emergency been approval by one pharmaceutical company and has been requested by a second company, but it will take time to distribute significantly enough to have an impact. As far as the presidential election goes, we should be coming to the end of the drama as the Electoral college has cast its vote and Biden, again, won, but the president continues to claim the election was rigged and some Republican senators are backing his play claiming they’ll contest these results. But it makes you wonder why, suddenly, so many are unwilling to accept the results of the election.

The reality is that if the election were rigged, that means that half of the states in the nation (I believe Biden carried 25 although for some reason I cannot find an exact count) would have to be in on it, including some with Republican governors and election officials. Biden carried the majority vote (which ironically doesn’t count for anything in our system) and as many electoral votes as the Trump won four years ago. All that remains is the confirmation by the senate, which some Republican senators claim will contest the results, but it seems unlikely that this will do anything more than delay the confirmation.

So why is this result so difficult for so many of us to accept? I guess there are always things that are difficult for us to accept. I find it difficult to accept my sexual fetishes, as I’ve written in blog posts previously, because it’s a fetish that plays on an actual act that I find abhorrent. I’ve always had a hard time accepting this in myself and have spent several years in therapy to accept this dark fantasy of myself.

These are trying times. Had Biden lost, I dare say I think it would be difficult for his supporters to face four more years of Trump, just as Trump supporters are now having a hard time facing the reality of a Biden presidency. Unfortunately, the president and his party are calling into question the election in an action, if we’re going to be completely honest about it, that questions the constitution and the very heart of American democracy. Even the court system has thrown out nearly all of the legal challenges saying that there is no evidence to support the claims. And yet, Trump supporters cannot accept the results.

I guess it’s human nature to resist accepting the painful. Today I was informed that a very good friend of mine lost her uncle to the Coronavirus. We’ve lost a lot in 2020, and maybe that’s part of the reason we find it so difficult to lose even more even if it is the presidential candidate we support. We’ve lost personal freedoms to keep each other safe, unfortunately including things like regular in-person schooldays, social gatherings and even holiday celebrations. Friends like mine have lost loved ones to Covid-19, and I suspect I might have lost my father as well although I have no way to verify that hypothesis.

Here’s another unverified hypothesis. People can only take so much loss, and this year has been a hard one. I still periodically think about my year of loss, starting with me giving up my tenured position, the loss of my cat, the disintegration of my marriage, the loss of my home, and the loss of my dog it wasn’t any one thing. A lot of people lose these things, but for me it all happened in one horrible year. At the end, I even lost my mother. To tell a dirty little secret, when I heard my mother had died, I actually laughed. It’s not that there was anything funny in it at all, but it just came at a time that I had lost so much that, frankly, it just wasn’t a surprise. The absurdity had reached such a point that I just couldn’t cry anymore.

Here’s reality. Trump lost. I understand being upset; Americans don’t like losing, but we have reached a time that we have to decide if we believe in democracy or not, and if we believe in the Constitution or not. Four years ago, I feared that a Trump presidency would be a nightmare, and it turned out to be even worse than I had feared, but I accepted Hillary’s loss, although this loss was a particularly difficult one since it was an electoral college loss, but a popular vote win. I believe in the concept of one person, one vote but the electoral college subverts that concept. None the less, Trump won in accordance with the US constitution and the way our elections operate. In the end, I supported America, and accepted that my candidate lost. It’s time to move on from this election. It’s time to move on.

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