When Barack Obama was sworn in as president, even though I didn’t vote for him, I felt proud. Proud of having the first African-American president. Maybe something good will come from his appointment, I thought.
Perhaps I had been wrong. I had two kids in college and one about to start. They were excited in the same way I was. Having a black president would unite our country; it would erase some of the lingering pain blacks have felt and we will all get along.
Identity politics hurt all of us.
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But that’s not what happened. The opposite happened, ironically. America became more divided as a nation than we’ve been in 40 years. Some blacks target policemen and kill them. Many Americans are uncomfortable sitting next to Muslims on a plane. We can’t admit that publicly, but it’s true.
If we dare state our feelings, we will be pummeled by those preaching inclusion that we are bigots. And bigotry, they say, is in fact a crime.
Now we have the first woman presidential candidate shouting that she will fight for real inclusion. She will cross party lines, help poor women and children — and if we vote for her, the next four years will be transformative for America. But if she does for women what Obama did for blacks, count on an even wider divide between men and women, blacks and whites, Muslims and non-Muslims.
Things could get ugly.
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Identity politics hurt all of us. The Democrats preach that it unites people — but the reality is, it powerfully divides us. And as a mother and grandmother, that worries me. Family dinners at our house have become so heated that our kids have stormed out. My brother yelled at me that I was a terrible American because I didn’t know the science behind global warming. It took us two weeks to get over the “debate.”
Is it fair to say Barack Obama has ruined the family dinner table? Well, in my home he has.
We owe it to our kids to stop this madness. Nothing ruins a country faster than personal hatred toward one’s neighbors, coworkers, or family members.
As a young 20-something, I never had heated discussions with friends or my parents about Jimmy Carter. I didn’t like the guy, but certainly didn’t hate him. Then Reagan became president and even those who didn’t espouse conservatism avoided debates because he ran the country really, really well. Republicans shook their heads at Bill Clinton’s terrible sexual behaviors and wanted him impeached. He got disbarred, but still, not many people broke up family dinners over him.
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What has happened over the past eight years is terrible for families. Liberal kids feel vitriol toward conservative parents they never felt before — and vice versa. This is not an accident. Division has come about by a calculated strategy to make enemies of those who disagree with the liberal mindset, policies, social positions, and religious views. Frank oppression has taken over in an effort by the Democrats to silence those who disagree simply for disagreeing. It doesn’t matter what we believe, but if we don’t align with their platform in any way, off with our heads. That’s what Barack Obama brought to the White House.
We owe it to our kids to stop this madness. Nothing ruins a country faster than personal hatred toward one’s neighbors, coworkers, or family members. Hillary Clinton will widen the chasm between us all even further, as we saw in her speech at the Democratic National Convention with her tone of voice, identity politics, and selective finger pointing. Her mission will be to take us — the Enemy — down.
If our kids jump aboard her train of anger and derision, they will unwittingly pit themselves against their own mothers and fathers.
Dr. Meg Meeker has practiced pediatrics and adolescent medicine for 30 years. She is the author of the online course, “The 12 Principles of Raising Great Kids,” which is part of The Strong Parent Project.