On the eve of this latest election, we consider the fact that this election has brought us to a place of such division and anger that we have not seen before. It has divided us along ethnic lines, gender lines, and racial lines. We are offered a choice between two of the most unpopular candidates in polling history. One vision wants to wall off the world around us in order to restore an American prosperity and a culture uncontaminated by foreign influences. It has “other-ized” Mexican-Americans and Muslim-Americans, demeaned women and other-abled Americans, and is going after anyone who they feel is responsible for the demise and decay of America. Their goal is to make America great again.
The other vision embraces the multi-cultural future of the United States and wants to participate in the globalizing future of the world. This world has open borders and migration bringing into balance human needs and the economic resources of the planet. We are citizens of the world. A vision seeking to break down barriers to civic participation based on gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity, and race. This will make America greater. After the election, the hard work will begin. Voting itself has always been divisive. Referring back to the previous sermon on how to live on the losing side, we look today on how to live on the winning side. The last time our country was this divided was during the Civil War. It is the job of both sides to make the country whole again.
The success of the victors lies in their ability to forgive their enemies in order to form a new social compact. This forgiveness requires empathy. the losing side must be ready to accept this forgiveness. Forgiveness must become a political reality. Just as Jesus and God forgave you, forgive one another.