Extremes: About the '16 Election

It's been a little difficult not to write about the outcome of this year's presidential election. I don't have a great deal to say about it, and I have even less to say that would be relevant to the topics on this blog -- not that I only post relevant things anyway. I'm not going to dive in very far; I just think the perspective I have is underrepresented.

For many the election could be summed up in one word: abortion. We fight as best as we can all year round, day after day, but voting is when we're especially heard. One candidate seemed to bend over backward to be as unsupportable as possible, and the other didn't. And that's all there was.

I admit I've been surprised by how emotional responses to the outcome have been. I didn't realize people cared so much about the presidency. There's been so much fear and anger; it's unusual, I think.

On the other hand, I did respond emotionally, too as I sat up late watching the impossible happen. I was alone and able to celebrate quietly, and I was beaming. I couldn't help but recall the disappointment and tangible despair following the last such election night. The kids and I went to Bible study on the following Wednesday morning. The heaviness in the air was a stark contrast to the elation out in the streets. There was one silver note I remember holding on to. An African-American, the son of slaves, would be president. It would serve as a reminder that the Lord can change all things, and that in the end, there will be an end.

One day abortion will be unthinkable. It will happen.

The President-elect was an extreme candidate. It was hard to believe his ascent to the Republican nomination. And a section of those who supported (and continue to celebrate) him are not groups most people want to have any association with. I certainly don't. Then again, I also don't wish to associate with several groups who applauded his opponent.

And that is what is often lost in the myriad of articles since the election -- the serious threat of the democratic presidential nominee and platform. It was the most extreme platform we have ever seen. In trying to understand and explain the, apparently, surprising loss of Clinton to Trump, more focus should be given to her extreme stance on abortion. I expect it essentially lost her the election.

And the final debate brought the issue so close to the forefront it was hard to think of much else at the voting booth. Clinton failed to fully comprehend that this wasn't just an issue -- something we could agree to disagree on like gun rights or tax subsidies. Real people are really dying. It's not politics. It's not the lesser evil. It can't be overlooked. It would have been a hard choice to possibly support someone who would likely do nothing in the fight for unborn lives. When late-term abortion was discussed and then defended by Clinton, and not by her opponent, the choice became exceedingly simpler.

There were other instances, too, such as the way Clinton spoke about the Supreme Court -- I can recall the refrain to "stand up" -- the way she unconditionally defended the nation's largest abortion provider over and over again, the way she called abortion "healthcare," bringing to mind activists who compare fetal termination to root canals and appendectomies. There was the horrid shadow of NARAL and Planned Parenthood over the entire Democratic National Convention. Cecile Richardson seemed omnipresent and universally revered there. I'll long-remember the sound of cheering as feticide was hypothetically and personally spoken of, confessed to, declared and upheld as good.

And the possibilities. The possibilities started to come to life in the wee hours of November 9th. Maybe Congress did well in withholding confirmation from the President's final Supreme Court nominee. Perhaps, the Court will, indeed, have a conservative bent. There was room to hope. Roe, suddenly, was in reach.

Time will tell how far we get, but as for right now, there is ample room to hope.