Complacency Is Not the Problem

It’s three days before the election, and those of us hoping for a change in the presidency are constantly being admonished not to be complacent. Above all, we’re told, we absolutely must vote and not take anything for granted.

Of course, I agree and have already double-checked that my absentee ballot was received and recorded. But I don’t think complacency is the issue. It’s more like acute anxiety and PTSD after what happened in 2016—not to mention worries about voter suppression, the possibility of protracted court battles over election results, and a rogue President and right wing militias fomenting civil unrest if the election results don’t go their way.

I’m trying really hard not to engage in one of my specialties, globalizing and calamitizing about the future. But I can’t help but feel this is a major turning point for our country and our democracy.

The choice could not be starker. Are we going to embrace the beauty and strength of being a multiracial and multi-ethnic democracy, or cling to tribal politics? Are we going to commit to dismantling systemic racism and level the playing field for all in education, housing, economic opportunity, and access to health care, or continue increasing the stark inequality between the haves and have nots in our society? Are we going to listen to our scientists and develop an actual plan to combat this terrible virus and address the existential threat of climate change, or live (and die) in a state of denial?

Most of all, are we going to be a nation in which decency, character, and compassion matter, or one in which we turn away from the specter of innocent children being torn from their parents’ arms at our borders?

I don’t know about you, but I’m anxious as hell—and so ready to turn the page to a more hopeful future for our nation.


  1. Marty Stiffler on October 31, 2020 at 11:41 am

    Yes, yes, and yes! You described what’s happening eloquently. We’re at a turning point, and I do hope we take the right turn. Thank you for encapsulating our views and feelings in your words.

    • Lynn Slaughter on October 31, 2020 at 12:51 pm

      Thanks, Marty!

  2. Jill Falconer on October 31, 2020 at 4:16 pm

    Perfect. Thank you!

  3. Donna Larose on October 31, 2020 at 4:23 pm

    Per usual, dear cousin, you nailed it. I’m feeling very anxious as well, and praying for our future, a future we can be proud to leave our grandchildren.

    • Lynn Slaughter on November 2, 2020 at 5:03 pm

      Thank you, dearcousin!

  4. Steffie Salter Kyte on November 2, 2020 at 3:43 pm

    Lynn – I couldn’t agree more. We have had to live with the choice our country made four years ago and now we really do need a change. The shocking and sad thing is that these years have torn us apart so drastically. It is frightening to think of what will happen in the days, weeks, months, and even years ahead.

    Wonderful to read how successful these years have been for you, and I wish you well with your writing.


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