The last days were exhausting, but we reached our main goal.
I am not talking about the outcome of the elections; I am talking about voter turnout.
For weeks, celebrities, activists, and friends encouraged us to go vote. It was all over the place: Vote!
It might take some time to figure out who won the election, but one thing is clear: People have woken up—not in the new age way of being woke, but in the “I want to participate in our democracy” way.
Whoever wins this election will be the President—with the most votes ever elected.
This is already a good sign itself. People used their voice and that’s all we can ask for. In a democracy, there will always be disagreements, but as long as we stay engaged anything can be done.
This is step one. What’s next?
There are two different ways of participating in a democracy: Voting and Running. I am not talking about running away; it’s actually quite the opposite of that.
Have you ever asked yourself how politicians came into their positions of power? Here is your answer: They ran for office.
How many people do you know ran for office in their lifetime? Probably not many. That’s the next step we need to work on.
Judging others is always easy, but how about taking action? What could be more mindful than taking responsibility? Is there any more powerful way of making the difference than actually making things happen?
I know it is intimidating to put ourselves out there and start campaigning. But let’s always keep in mind that others—who we regularly criticise—have done exactly that.
I am not telling you what party to run for or what your agenda should look like—that’s up to you.
All I am asking for is that I want to see us being the change that we would like to see. Not just talk about it. I trust you. We managed to master step one and now it is time to take the second one.
For the first time in history, we saw two white males in their 70s run for President. We did a great job and went voting, but the choices were not satisfying to many of us. Either way, we still did our job.
Let’s take the energy that got stirred up by four years of madness in the White House and take it as a motivation to do better. If he can be President, we can run for office in our community. What do you have to lose?
I am not saying that you have to run; I am just trying to tell you that you could. If it is too much for you, why not motivate someone else? We all have that one friend who always says things we can agree with. Why not ask that person to represent us?
We have to think outside the box.
Would you like to see Dave Chappelle run for Governor in Ohio?
Why not have Alyssa Milano run for Congress?
Who wants to see Waylon, Elephant’s Editor in Chief as the Mayor of Boulder?
It might sound far-fetched, but aren’t politicians normal human beings after all? They all have their flaws—some more than others—but they are all doing their best. Mainly, their job is to represent others.
If people in our community trust us, why not do them the favor and represent them?
Instead of disrespecting politicians, we should start thanking them for their time or do a better job ourselves. Everyone is allowed to run, but if we choose not to run, we should, at least, respect those who did.
This election showed that people care about politics. They care about the well-being of their community. There is so much hope for our future.
At the same time, there is a lot that needs to get done:
_______ (It’s up to you!)
We might not know how to do it, but we can learn that part. Remember, when we started going to elementary school, we were not able to read—look at us now. As human beings, we can grow with challenges. It can be fun to leave our comfort zone and get things going.
The hardest part is always the first step. We just took that step together.
We achieved the highest turnout of voters in a hundred years. Let’s set the bar a little higher for next time by:
Voting for people who we know. Voting for candidates who we support like our brothers and sisters.
Or maybe even run ourselves?
You got this!