Election Day 2022 – the midterms – is now history, although many votes are still being counted. Fortunately, casting ballots across our country generally appears to have gone quite smoothly (although some voters did experience intimidation in some areas). Given the fact that the Georgia Senate election will go into a runoff and the long process to count votes in the contested states of Arizona and Nevada, it is still possible that we will face conspiracy theories and lies; our political climate over the past few years (thanks in large part to the Big Lie perpetrated by the twice-impeached, one-term former President Donald Trump) have led to this disgraceful situation.
Those of us on the “left” – and, one suspects, most everyday Americans – would like nothing more than normalcy, peace, unity and respect for our invaluable institutions. If we do have to contend with the many others – maybe millions – who primarily want power, influence and, tragically, another American Revolution, we need to find ways to deal with this productively, safely, and legally. We also need to feel at least somewhat empowered and positive.
Here are a few modest, probably obvious, suggestions:
- Keep spreading truth and combating disinformation, in whatever ways we can. Some people on the sidelines or the political fence are persuadable to different ways of thinking and behaving when presented with facts and information from trusted sources.
- Donate time, money, talent and energy to causes and organizations that promote positive values.
- Become or continue to be a member of a supportive community. Isolation can be damaging and even dangerous. Find time to spend with good friends and family.
- Stay balanced by doing spiritual or inspirational reading and not overly consuming news or social media.
- Exercise, get fresh air, eat healthy food as much as possible, and enjoy the wonders of nature.
- Take in the arts, music, and theater and support them financially as much as possible.
- Interact with animals and birds that bring us pleasure, entertain us, or make us laugh.
- Enjoy a funny, cute, children’s or favorite movie.
- If possible, learn to say “no” to unreasonable requests or demands that drain or harm us.
- Pray or in other ways send up positive, healing vibes into the universe.
Here from the Book of Common Prayer are a prayer and litany for our country (both edited):
Almighty God, who has given us this good land for our
heritage: We humbly beseech you that we may always prove
ourselves a people mindful of your favor and glad to do your will.
Bless our land with honorable industry, sound learning, and
pure manners. Save us from violence, discord, and confusion;
from pride and arrogance, and from every evil way. Defend
our liberties, and fashion into one united people the multitudes
brought here out of many kindreds and tongues. Endue
with the spirit of wisdom those to whom we entrust
the authority of government, that there may be justice and
peace at home, and that, through obedience to your law, we
may show forth your praise among the nations of the earth.
In the time of prosperity, fill our hearts with thankfulness,
and in the day of trouble, suffer not our trust in you to fail. Amen.
We thank you for the great resources of this nation. They
make us rich, though we often exploit them.
We thank you for the men and women who have made this
country strong. They are models for us, though we often fall
short of them.
We thank you for the torch of liberty which has been lit in
this land. It has drawn people from every nation, though we
have often hidden from its light.
We thank you for the faith we have inherited in all its rich
variety. It sustains our life, though we have been faithless
again and again.
Help us, O Divine Love, to finish the good work here begun.
Strengthen our efforts to blot out ignorance and prejudice,
and to abolish poverty and crime. And hasten the day when
all our people will be united with many voices in one beautiful chorus. Amen.