With the elections almost here and soon to be over I have noticed a trend that is really hurting me to the core of who I am as a human.
Without getting political I want to say that I have friends that are on each extreme side of the political fence. Some aggressively supporting Clinton and some Trump. Each having their opinions and reasons for the candidate they support.
The Outside Voice is not going to endorse any candidate publicly as I do not feel that is my place nor is this the forum.
Instead I am going to make a plea to all my friends and those I do not yet know. Please make an effort in the coming months to understand that your political affiliation does not define who you are as a person nor does someone elses.
I am tired.
I am tired of being put in a box by the right wing because at heart I am a born and raised tree-huggin hippie that loves to hike and backpack.
I am tired of being put in a box by the left wing because I own guns and off-road vehicles that take me to remote locations I would not be able to experience any other way.
Through my life I have learned that you will be apparently hypocritical by narrow minded people.
My sexuality shouldn’t dictate who I am going to vote for any more than my gun collection says that I do not have a respect for the wilderness areas that I love.
I have personally witnessed so called conservationists leaving camp sites destroyed and i’ve seen gun loving rednecks volunteering to maintain a hiking trail.
On the other side i’ve been to remote camping areas that are littered with bullets and trees that have been destroyed, while others are deeply hurt and saddened by the carnage left behind.
My point is that we can be politically bipolar.
We can be rednecks with gay friends.
We can be tree huggers and own guns.
We can be Republicans that hate witnessing our environment being trashed by big corporation.
We can be Democrats that enjoy the gun range and believe education is the best form of gun control.
All stereotyping is a form of racism. Can you find people that will support the stereotypes you currently hold onto if you look? Of course you can.
But this is where I reach out for change. Instead of looking for the people that support your stereotypical view, reach out and look for those that go against those stereotypes. There are people out there that are political hypocrites.
If we are to hope for real lasting change we need to look to one another. Let’s face it the candidates for the presidential election this year both have faults. They have both been proven to have said and done things that they should be ashamed of as human beings.
I don’t have the answers. I wish I did. But I do believe one thing and that is that we the people of the United States need to stop acting like a divided nation. We need to stand together and say enough is enough. We need to stop hating others because of the assumed beliefs we have about them based on sexual orientation, religion, political affiliation, ethnic background, or any other of a thousand things that make us unique individuals.
As individuals we can stand for something other than what our “crowd” represents. We can have differing opinions and not hate on one another.
And we can give hope to one another for the future of our country and the world.