Editor, The Messenger,

When the final results of this election are in, an historic exercise of democracy will have taken place. Some of us will be beyond elated. Some of us will be bitterly disappointed.

It is obvious that as a nation we have become more divided than ever. Southeastern Ohio is more divided than ever. Now the time is upon us to begin to heal the wounds and reach out across divisions to rebuild the bonds that once held us together.

We understand that many will be celebrating. We hope to be celebrating as well. In the midst of celebration there will be a pull to point fingers at those who have voted differently. We may be vulnerable to blaming others with all the pent up anger and disappointment we carry. We may be tempted to make fun of and taunt. We may act as if those who have disagreed with us are stupid or evil.

Please don’t. Please use the opportunity instead to move beyond this time of discord. Please use this time to remember what we share and what we can accomplish by working together. Please rejoin the beloved community and invite others from every walk of life and every political leaning to join with you.

At the end of the day, we are neighbors. Let’s create the best neighborhoods we can. Let’s include everyone regardless of who they love, the color of their skin, or how they voted.

The Athens Community

Relations Commission

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