Why I Still Have Hope

US President Barack Obama(R) and First Lady Michelle Obama(L) welcome Preisdent-elect Donald Trump(2nd-R) and his wife Melania to the White House in Washington, DC January 20, 2017. / AFP / JIM WATSON (Photo credit should read JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)

Today is the day, January 20th, 2017, inauguration day when the peaceful transfer of power will take place here in the United States.  I will be honest; I was not looking forward to this day.  It is my firm belief that Donald Trump represents all that is wrong with America.  I was angry at his election, and I was sad, but I got over it.

We had an election and my candidate lost.  I should say, candidates, since I voted for Bernie Sanders in the primary and Hillary Clinton in the general election.  So I guess that makes me a two-time loser.  We had an election and at 12:01 pm today we will witness the peaceful transition of power.  At the same time, in the African country of Gambia, the former president, who conceded the election, refuses to leave office and the military has now been called in.  Although President Obama and President-Elect Trump stand on opposite sides of the political spectrum, the power will transfer peacefully, and the sun will rise tomorrow.

I will not join the chorus of people who call Mr. Trump’s election illegitimate.  I will not join in on the whole Russia got Trump elected nonsense.  Maybe all of that will prove to be true, and there is a process in place to deal with that when and if it happens, that it how we do things in America.  We have survived bad presidents, we have survived numerous wars, including a Civil War.  We endured the Great Depression and many recessions, and we survived the worst terrorist attack on our nation on that morning in September of 2001.  What makes America great is what we are witnessing today.

I will also not join in the chorus of people who say Trump is not my president.  I am an American; I spent most of my adult life in the United States Army defending what we see today.  Like it or not, Donald Trump will be the President of the United States and as such, will be my president.

I will also not join the chorus of people who say they will treat Donald Trump with the same respect that some in the GOP treated Mr. Obama.  There needs to be an end to opposition simply because the president is from the other side.  Loyal opposition opposes what they feel is wrong based on the needs of the country not just the needs of the party.  We need a sense of doing what is right not just what is popular.

But, I support people’s rights to boycott the inauguration, they have to do what they feel is right and it happens every four years.  I was not going to watch today, but I decided that I had too, this is a historic moment not only in the history of the United States but the history of the world.  After all, we have been through as a country; we are still here.

Do I hope Donald Trump fails, on some things I certainly do? I hope his planned Muslim registry fails, I hope his wall across the Mexican border fails, I hope his plan to repeal the Affordable Care Act without a replacement fails, and I hope his tax breaks for the rich fail.  I hope many of his sections for Cabinet positions do not get confirmed, but do I hope Donald Trump fails; I do not.  Do I hope he is a one term President?  Yes, I do, but I do not want any physical harm to come upon him nor do I hope he fails.  For America to succeed, everyone needs to work together.

But let me be very clear, I will resist the policies of President Trump with every fiber of my being on the issues that I feel need opposing.  This is what the opposition does, it is what the Tea Party did the last eight years, and it is now what we will do the next four years.  My faith drives me to care for those less fortunate and to be their voice, and that is what I have done, and I will continue to do.  I did not always agree with the opposition these last eight years, but they have their beliefs, and I have mine, again, that is what has made America great.

Yesterday, Mr. Trump tweeted in all caps “the movement continues – the work begins!”  He is right, the opposition movement continues, and the work of resistance begins.

So why do I have hope?  I have hope because America is bigger than any one person or political party.  I have hope because there is opposition, and I have hope because I have to have hope, I will not give up on America!

As I finish writing this, all of the players have assembled at the Capital, and the prayers have just started by the various religious leaders that have been invited.  I offer my prayer for you, as I will for the next four years.  Celebrate today, and get to work tomorrow for I will be watching.

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