In my campaign to try to be the next Ward 8 Council leader I have been to over 1000 Democratic voters so far. (Some I've gotten to speak to and some I've just dropped off literature.)
It has been such a wonderful opportunity to get to talk to all these people. I've learned some things along the way.
IN GENERAL, I believe there is a consistent sentiment that runs through the Democratic community. They truly care about things outside of themselves.
They care about the environment, about animals, about homeless people, about low income people.
I've had several people say to me that they want EVERYONE to be taken care of.
I feel like that is in contradiction to what I'm seeing IN GENERAL in the Republican party. They seem mostly angry. Angry that their country is changing. Angry that immigrants are getting more attention than people who have lived here for generations. Angry that liberals don't care about them (even though they will care about just about anyone or anything else).
Now... to be VERY CLEAR, these are sweeping generalizations. Some of the most extremely giving people I have ever met in helping homeless people has come from Fundamentalist Christian Conservatives. In fact, they may give the most.
And I DEFINITELY know angry Democrats (I often find myself in that camp.)
When I started writing this I had an idea of this being a kind of gloating diatribe that Democrats are better than Republicans. But now that I'm at that point I have changed my mind.
I think Democrats still have more work to do. There is no point in shaking our finger at other people. It just makes things worse. The only meaningful work to do is to work on ourselves.
I'd like my fellow Democrats, this holiday season, to think about how our Conservative neighbors are feeling. Think about how maybe they feel like the world is moving on without them. About how once upon a time their values and ideals were the mainstream. And now they are not only being sidelined, they are being chastised for loving God and loving family.
Conservatives are angry because they are sad and hurting. That's where all anger comes from.
OF COURSE we can't allow the Constitution to be thrown away. OF COURSE we can't physically hurt Black people and immigrants.
But maybe when we see Conservatives yelling about immigration and non-traditional values, we could see it for what it really is: A deep sadness of loss and isolation.
Conservatives are absolutely critical for the success of our country. They protect us. They take care of us in hospitals. They build our roads. They fight our wars. They grow our food. They do the work that Liberals simply aren't good at yet are so needed.
Yes, Democrats. You are very caring. But keep caring. Push it into areas that make you uncomfortable and even scary. That's where the most profound work of compassion and love really start to work.
I love you all.