The 2016 presidential election is officially over, and the event that has been at the forefront of our attention on campus and in the media can finally shift from this to other important events locally, nationally and internationally.
The election has been at the center of attention during the past year, and the general public is ready to move on from it.
For me, this has been an exhausting election cycle. Not because it is my first time voting and learning about both candidates, but because of the rhetoric surrounding the election and the candidates.
What I have been reading and watching on the news has been focused on political scandal and on opposing the other side for their lack of humanity and for being unfit to hold the presidency. My Facebook and Twitter feeds have been filled with people ranting about the election and the mishaps of both candidates.
There has not been a day where I see a post that disregards Donald Trump supporters for being inhumane and question how they can support such a person or a post saying that Hillary Clinton is a liar and has a lot to hide from the U.S. Both sides constantly nag on the other in hopes to shatter their campaign.
One thing that I think we lost in this election is integrity and respect. The way that people on and off campus have been treating each other shows a lack of respect for those who have different views and oppose the policy and beliefs of another.
While I disagree with many about their political views, it is not my place to judge others so harshly. What I can do is listen to why they believe what they do and hope that they do the same for me.
Listening to one another as opposed to fighting is a more productive way to share views and even influence others and help them understand your own view. Engaging in conversation that allows you to articulate your views and express why you think your right is more beneficial than going on a rant about it.
The only way we can understand one another and even shape another’s views is by listening and respecting each other.
What I have seen during this election is a multitude of people yelling, fighting, ranting and disrespecting those who have a different view as opposed to taking the time to listen.
If both sides fight to the death, then no middle-ground will ever be found, and the polarization of our country will continue to get worse.
With this election finished and the next president elected, it is time for the general public to listen to one another, so we can avoid another election as polarized and controversial as this.
Moving forward, we need to aim to recapture our integrity and respect for one another in an effort to better ourselves and the country.