Forward Thinking

Forward Thinking

By Rachel Birdsell

As I sit here the day after the election, I am so proud of the direction our country has taken. It seems as though we are finally starting to see the light. With President Barack Obama snagging 332 electoral votes and the popular vote, it’s clear that the majority of us are ready for progress. This election we elected our first openly lesbian senator. There were at least eight other openly gay or lesbian politicians elected to various seats around the country. Next year, there will be a record number of 19 women holding seats in the Senate. One of those will be the first Asian-American woman we’ve sent to the Senate. We made strides toward equality this time around.

But there is still a chunk of our country that isn’t happy with the election results. After the initial shock wore off, right wing pundits started the excuses why Mitt Romney lost the election. I could save them the trouble of having to make up lies and tell them that he lost because he didn’t get as many votes. The reason he didn’t get as many votes is because no one knew from one hour to the next where he stood on the issues. He lost because he lied so much during his campaign he made other politicians look like amateurs. He lost because he couldn’t keep up with the changing demographics of our country. He lost because we recognized that he’s the epitome of the jerk boss.

One of the main talking points being slopped around like cafeteria hash is that President Obama was re-elected because everyone who voted for him wants government handouts. Considering that the states that receive the majority of federal help are red states, I don’t know why they think this particular lie will stick. Unless they’re retired, all of the Democrats I know work for a living. They aren’t receiving any food stamps or welfare, but are, instead, holding down jobs so they can pay taxes so other people can have food stamps and welfare. Liberals don’t care if you’re on some kind of public assistance as long as you really need it. We will gladly pay a little more in taxes if it means that other people get the food, shelter and health care they need.

The wailing and gnashing of teeth is being reverberated across the country. The extreme right is screaming that we’ve turned away from God and we’re now a socialist country. Of course, the people who are saying that have absolutely no idea what socialism really is. Unfortunately, they don’t want to try and educate themselves on the matter, either. They also don’t understand that we were never intended to be a Christian nation and our founding fathers were pretty clear that there should be a separation of church and state. Karl Rove, along with his ilk such as Ann Coulter, Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, Donald Trump and Bill O’Reilly are seething over the results. They are shocked that the majority of voters didn’t believe their tripe.

If you’re one of the people sputtering about President Obama’s win, you have a choice. You’ve had time to be pissed and get it out of your system. Now, you can either stay angry and keep making excuses for why Mitt Romney lost, or you can accept that there is a change happening in our country. We are moving forward, and if you don’t choose to come along for the ride, you’re going to be left behind.

Rachel Birdsell is a freelance writer and artist. You can drop her a line at

Categories: Commentary