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Column: The Real People

The Real People

Dear Readers:

It’s over now.

Thank God.

The election is finally over.

Unless there’s some sort of Florida-type, hanging chad issue, or some such craziness….which, given how the rest of the cycle has gone is, just, WAY too possible.

But no. We’re going to go with the idea that hopefully, PLEASE, this election is over.

This is being written on Monday, when I have absolutely no clue what is going to happen tomorrow, and let’s, for the sake of my, of all of our sanity, go with that assumption.

I’m not talking about our local elections. I am honestly excited to report the results of those – a complete report which won’t be in this week’s paper, but which I will put up at nash-news.com, just as soon as I am able. We’ll also try to print out results to have available for perusal at the front desk of The Nashville News as well.

No, I’m not talking about local elections. I’m talking about the national elections. Specifically, I’m ready for the presidential elections to be done.

I for one, am entirely ready to be done with the Donald and Hillary dance.

If there is one message that I wish to, hope to, convey to our readers about the aftermath of this election, it’s this: Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton are not real people.

Sure. They have pulses and heartbeats. Probably. You aren’t going to have an honest conversation with them though, either of them. You aren’t going to shake their hands. And if you do, they’re probably going to dab on the Purell as soon as they can afterwards.

So, the message that I hope to convey (anytime now, Alex) is that while they aren’t real people, their voters are. They are your friends and family, they are your neighbors, they are your cats. Well, scratch that last one, but otherwise, yes.

It might seem believable that there are those people and our people, and while majorities do go in different directions based on where someone might live, not everyone in one area or another actually votes the way that given area votes. There are plenty of people in Washington County that vote differently than you, no matter which way you vote.

No matter which way you vote, the people on the other side are not all the dummies that the people on your side would like you to believe that they are.

Chances are, you know some people that voted in a way you don’t agree with. Chances are, you even love some people that voted in a way you don’t agree with. It might seem easy to think of the other side as those people: caricatures put forward by your partisan news source of choice…effeminate, whiny liberals or racist, monotoothed hillbillies.

Those might make for good soundbites and news clips, and it works well to get the base mobilized to get out the vote.

It absolutely isn’t true though.

It’s a load of bull, and it’s sold to us with one real purpose- make us money.

Elections are bread and butter for the news media, no matter which side they are hoping wins. Caricatures sell papers and ads and get you to tune in at ten (nine central).

I have enough friends, family and loved ones tossing around various memes and falsehoods for both sides of this thing that I’m ready to shut off the TV and sign out of Facebook. I won’t, because that’s addiction for you, but I probably should.

I don’t, and you don’t have to live with Donald or Hillary though.

Thank God, because honestly, they both seem, as people, to be pretty intolerable.

Yes, you will, we all will, have to live with whichever one of them pulls off the electoral math to win this, but in the end, they’ll live in the White House, not your house.

The people you do ACTUALLY have to live with, are those friends, neighbors and family members, who may or may not have voted the same as you did.

When the dust settles and we, the great media, have moved on to the next thing to get people up in arms about, those people will still be there.

You might not love their opinions, you won’t agree with them – either all of your people or all of your people’s opinions….but you do love them.

Keep that in mind. November 8s come and go. There will be another election. Improbably enough, the next one might be even crazier than this one, God help us all.

And elections ARE important.

They just aren’t as important as the real people close to you are.

PLEASE.

Please. Try to remember that, once this is all over.

–Alex Haglund, Managing Editor