A PTSD Election

I talked to a friend the other day, a fellow Bernie Sanders supporter (Berner), and we talked about experiencing a kind of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

We have since the end of the primaries, since Bernie Sanders endorsed Hillary, since the DNC the last week of July – been bummed out from: Bernie not winning, his endorsement of “her”, the fiasco of the DNC according to many Bernie delegates, the blatant (to many of us) election rigging, DNCLeaks, voter suppression and disenfranchisement, potential election fraud, #ExitPollGate, seeing the Bernie vote split between Jill, Trump, Gary, Hill or even those who just don’t want to vote at all now.

And, it occurred to me that it wasn’t that simple. It’s not simply just a case of PTSD.

The reason people feel lost now isn’t just that Bernie lost. We feel, deep down, that WE, the United States and perhaps even the World lost. Not just because we spent our hard earned dollars supporting his campaign, not just because we phone banked and text banked, not just because we knocked on doors and talked to everyone who would show even a slight interest in Bernie’s campaign or even those who didn’t, not just because we feel we are more in-tuned (awake) to the truth of life in America and even life in the world now than perhaps others who we feel may be unaware, not just because of the wars and the military industrial complex, private prison industry, fracking, the rape of our planet, climate change (global warming), the oligarchy, the TPP, our sick government, but so much more we see wrong with the world.

No, what we feel is beyond sadness. It is almost a hopelessness. With Bernie, we saw and felt HOPE like we had never felt before. Because we felt and heard and knew, he was speaking a truth. Maybe it was just a domestic truth, but in our hearts we knew it was the truth of the world. We finally, after years of seeing what we felt was the downfall of our society, our corrupt government bought and paid for by the rich and national and multi-national corporations, lobbyists – that finally, someone was (still) fighting for us, finally, someone was truly “telling it like it is” (and no, it wasn’t Trump). Finally, we had hope that we could change the world for the better, and it wasn’t just Bernie, it was a political revolution, and it wasn’t just him, it was US. We had hope even though we knew that if he won, he probably would not be able to get all he talked about the issues accomplished, and we knew that, yet, we also knew that what was important was that he would continue to fight, and so would we – and that what was even more important than him winning was that his message, our message, would continue to be heard – and heard loudly – and that maybe not just us, but the U.S., and even the rest of the world, could hear and see and believe – the world from a humanistic standpoint, can be and will be a better place for us all.

And, so, now, we are feeling lost, dejected, quieted, afraid, sad, lonely, hopeless – because we wonder if his message has died with his campaign. We feel no one is listening as we see Hillary select Tim Kaine, a centrist, as her running mate; as she selects former Interior Secretary, Ken Salazar as the head of her transition team (a pro TPP guy); as Trump continues to make one political faux pas after another; as we hear of the native American tribes standing against the North Dakota pipeline to preserve their water; as we hear of the flooding in Louisiana which seems to have drawn little national attention; bombing in Syria with pictures of small children; the constant tirade of the DNC blaming Russia; wondering if Julian Assange will make it to his big revelation in October; having just heard Bernie will resume stumping for Hillary in September; and Jeff Weaver is now on Our Revolution though wasn’t he working will Hillary’s national general election campaign?

We wonder – is anyone listening? Are we defenseless against the oligarchy? Has Bernie sold out? Does Jill really have a chance given the split in votes and the polls? Do we, Americans, have to continue to deal with the crumbs that are fed us from the 1%, or continue to see the middle class and those at the poverty level or below continue to decline into abject poverty? Does it matter who is “President of the United States” if the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), and the Trade In Services Agreement (TISA) pass in our legislatures?  Is America, the United States really run by 8 (or sometimes 9) Kings, those who with judicial review decide if a law is upholding or against the Constitution with no government branch or even We the People to question their findings?  We even wonder, is our Constitution specific enough for 2016?  230 years after it was established?

I understand your frustration. This is not just a line palavered by medical professionals in trying health crisis. It isn’t some band-aid to make you feel better. Some platitude meant to give you calm, peace, or reassurance.

No, in this case, I don’t want your frustration to be diminished or minimized. In this case, I want you to do as Bernie stated, “Never, ever lose you sense of outrage!” Keep fighting the fight. We may have lost the battle, but we can win the war.

To see each step that happened – to see that maybe that is how it was supposed to have happened.  To see that if Bernie had won the nomination, would we be working towards a third party possibility? To see that, would we have been as incensed or outraged as we are now, further looking at the unjust wars in the world, the raping of our land for greed and profit, the atrocities being brought on people throughout the world in the name of “freedom” by the U.S. hand,  the fracking and pipelines that continue to rape our fresh water?

To see that, maybe, just maybe, all is right with the world, even though Bernie isn’t the nominee for the highest position in this land of ours, a land of supposed freedom and liberty.

To see that even as Bernie endorses and stumps for her, we KNOW what we have to do to take our country back.  That if he had won or fought the nomination, would we be where we are today?

I used to believe “everything happens for a reason.”  I got away from that thinking for a few years, maybe decades.  Now, I am revisiting this notion – because I have also, in these past few years come to believe this – if you believe you can, you are halfway there.  If you can visualize and imagine the world you want to be, see it, believe it – you, we, can manifest it.  The law of attraction is real.  Imagining and thinking something is the first step to it actually happening!

Will it happen today, in 5 years, in 10 years or in 20 years? There is a notion floating around that Seeing is Believing.  But there is also another notion that Believing is SEEING.  Is that where we are now?  We must imagine and believe it to be possible before it actually is not only possible, but reality?

No matter how you feel about Bernie today, can you see that he has made the idea of the POSSIBLE great, equitable, fair, just, tranquil, serene, enlightened REALITY a more likely possibility?

Can you see that it is not up to him?  That him, as he is now, as everything happens for a reason – that he is exactly where he needs to be, and that even if by some miracle, or is it by us believing it first, that he DOES become President of the United States of America, that even if that becomes our reality, everything has happened as it should?

Because now, we know, we see, we are aware – he needs us to be by his side, helping him and even reminding him, or perhaps he even needs us to take our OWN leadership and initiative – AND to remind us who we are, what we think, what we want -so that truly, we will finally be a country, a world – OF the people, BY the people, and FOR the people – for the highest good of all concerned.

BERNASTE!

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12 thoughts on “A PTSD Election”

  1. AGREED! After months of forming our group Facebook.com/groups/occupydncconvention and friendships with shared goals all over this country ..with Bernie at the center …TONIGHT (August 24th) if of particular importance to keeping hope alive …will Bernie bring up Hillary’s name? …will he join us in our support for Jill? …will he consider running independently? …did he sign up for write in status? ..so many questions. Grass-roots isn’t easy ..it’s hard to stay united/organized without the mainstream media on our side. We need to BE the mainstream media …so much to be done. We don’t give up ..we can’t give up ..else we lose hope, meaning, and ourselves.

  2. I doubt that losing a primary election would qualify as an external traumatic event under DSM IV or DSM 5. But so long as there are even Bernie supporters who call themselves “revolutionaries”– and then turn around and vote for Republicans and Democrats– it is understandable why the rest of us would feel depressed and a sense of hopelessness that so many can be “fooled all of the time” about what is required for a real revolution.

    1. I don’t care if the events would qualify as traumatic events under DSM IV or DSM 5; it is definite that because of these events my diagnosed depression is almost out of control. ~~dru~~

  3. Never lose your sense of outrage!!
    This election is a farce. It was rigged from the beginning. We have no democracy.

  4. Suzy, I am going to link this to a group that will enjoy this. We are on reddit and call ourselves The Way of the Bern. We are in the same place as you. I also reblogged this to another group that is small but have been friends for a decade.

  5. Nobody who was in Philly and saw what we saw will ever be the same. Let’s face it, we saw proof of something we have been hearing for years. You just think you have a choice when you vote. The candidates were all pre chosen. what we saw in Philly was the death of democracy. Perhaps the most flawed candidate in history hand picked by Wall Street to make sure they continue to get theirs while we continue to get less of what’s left. We saw hard evidence of election fraud and tampering, and the corruptor in chief got promoted to honorary campaign chair. We now see Sanders so busy campaigning for Clinton he has no time for Tim Canova. Really? Some of the people I went with are first coming out of hiding. Every day I see people write about how they are still crying and not functioning. Being there changed all of us. You cannot see what we saw and remain the same. What matters is that we stay involved, tell our stories and continue to make a difference. I walked away from the Democratic party after Philly because I realized that they were the party of Wall street, just like the republican party is. I will no long vote for the evil of two lessers. I will be voting for and supporting Jill Stein. And I will keep putting the truth out there. What people do with it is up to them.

  6. Well, I was in Philly as a delegate as well and saw from the inside what a corrupt system it is. I’ve know that for years, but to see it first-hand solidifies, unfortunately, what I already knew. We’re owned by the billionaires and corporate free-marketers every inch of the way. I’m not for Jill Stein and though it may be unrealistic, I still believe in making the Democratic Party a party of the people. Due to illness, I didn’t participate in yesterday’s Bernie events. Perhaps someone can tell me if that gave them any hope. We need new leadership, truly dedicated people, and we need to not just say Bernie’s name but what he stands for. I’ve always felt we were not getting the message out in terms of the issues and the solutions. They’re all doable and, in fact, they must be done to survive as a nation. One of the things that struck me at the convention, among many, was the call for American exceptionalism, we are the best, the greatest, and we have to go forward outside our boundaries to save the world (buzz words for we want their oil and other natural resources). The speakers stirred up a base that, I believe, really has no idea any longer what America is or what it stands for. The same billionaires and corporations who paid for the DNC are the same ones that have no loyalty to this country, to our jobs, factories, children, social programs, and schools, and yet, all their hacks on stage were calling to go forth with American’s manifest destiny (obviously to also compete with Trump). In the name of free markets, they have become global with no loyalty to us, just their quest for never-ending profits at the top, the free-market austerity model. To top it off for me, Facebook through me off my page today, I can only assume its because yesterday I mentioned them by name as one of the many corporations that spend most of their time figuring out how not to pay taxes to the country that gave them every opportunity to make their money. .

  7. Well, I was in Philly as a delegate as well and saw from the inside what a corrupt system it is. I’ve know that for years, but to see it first-hand solidifies, unfortunately, what I already knew. We’re owned by the billionaires and corporate free-marketers every inch of the way. I’m not for Jill Stein and though it may be unrealistic, I still believe in making the Democratic Party a party of the people. Due to illness, I didn’t participate in yesterday’s Bernie events. Perhaps someone can tell me if that gave them any hope. We need new leadership, truly dedicated people, and we need to not just say Bernie’s name but what he stands for. I’ve always felt we were not getting the message out in terms of the issues and the solutions. They’re all doable and, in fact, they must be done to survive as a nation. One of the things that struck me at the convention, among many, was the call for American exceptionalism, we are the best, the greatest, and we have to go forward outside our boundaries to save the world (buzz words for we want their oil and other natural resources). The speakers stirred up a base that, I believe, really has no idea any longer what America is or what it stands for. The same billionaires and corporations who paid for the DNC are the same ones that have no loyalty to this country, to our jobs, factories, children, social programs, and schools, and yet, all their hacks on stage were calling to go forth with American’s manifest destiny (obviously to also compete with Trump). In the name of free markets, they have become global with no loyalty to us, just their quest for never-ending profits at the top, the free-market austerity model. To top it off for me, Facebook threw me off my page today, I can only assume its because yesterday I mentioned them by name as one of the many corporations that spend most of their time figuring out how not to pay taxes to the country that gave them every opportunity to make their money. .

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