By Rev. Mindi
It’s over. It’s over.
Of course it’s not totally over, but it’s over enough for now.
I was sick of the commercials, sick of the rhetoric, sick of the Facebook status updates. But yet I stayed up and watched the returns, the projections, the predictions and the announcements. Because this election was incredibly pivotal.
Equal marriage has prevailed, though civil rights should never have been on the ballot to begin with. But the people have affirmed that marriage should be for all committed couples. (note: I'm writing this before Minnesota and Washington's returns are in, but hearing that Maine and Maryland have spoken, I'm feeling good about the prospects). Surprisingly, marijuana use was approved of even more than equal marriage in some states—which leads me to believe that this is a lot less about decriminalization for law enforcement’s sake and more that marijuana use has gained greater acceptance. I still haven’t wrapped my mind around the margins in the votes on marijuana use compared to equal marriage in my mind.
And yes, our president was re-elected. And the discussion of the electoral college may come up all over again, as it did twelve years ago, but somehow I imagine the fact that Gore won the popular vote will be lost in the discussion.
So where do we go from here, post-electionacalypse?
Where do we go from here on the struggle for equal marriage? How do we overturn constitutional amendments in other states and get legislation passed at the national level to guarantee the rights of all couples to legal marriage? How do we take up the call for justice and move on the momentum?
Where do we go from here in the separation of church and state? We know the violent rhetoric from the right that has become infused with religious jargon will intensify. How do we continue to speak out for religious freedom? And how do we claim our space and voice as Christians when others have held such a tight grasp on Jesus and the Bible?
And finally, where do we go in giving voice to the voiceless? I think of all the issues that were never addressed in this election: yesterday as people went to the polls, another mass shooting took place. We have not addressed gun violence and the accessibility of weapons. We have not spoken up enough about this nor have we demanded that our candidates address it. While healthcare, mainly “Obamacare” was addressed, there are still so many people who will be without healthcare even after the reforms are put in place. How do we continue to push for healthcare as a right, and not a privilege for a few? How do we continue to raise the issue of women’s rights and health as people of faith? And immigration: how do we continue to work towards equality and justice for all of God's children?
I could go on and on. I’m glad it’s over, and yet, the work has just begun, Christians. The work has just begun.