It’s the day after the election. A few hours ago the winners were only candidates. A few hours ago people went into voting booths and expressed their trust in those candidates, trust that they can act responsibly and can solve the ills of our society and bind up the wounds of our state and nation.
Yesterday they were citizens in the arena.
Today they are suddenly something else.
They are “politicians.”
Yesterday we believed those who campaigned by saying, “I’m not a professional politician.”
Today that’s exactly what they are.
Yesterday their proclamation that they were not “professional politicians” was a good credential.
Today that credential has been cancelled.
We cancelled it for them when we voted them into office.
Two years from now we’ll be hearing campaign rhetoric that describes them as among the “politicians” who have done everything wrong. They’ll be the “politicians” we don’t trust. They’ll be the “politicians’ we can’t wait to hate. They’ll be the individuals we can identify within the faceless mass we derisively label as “politicians.”
With the counting of the votes, dozens of Missourians have gone from being people the voters trusted to being the “politicians” who are to blame for everything that’s wrong.
Overnight they have become untrustworthy.
Overnight THEY have become the problems, not the solution.
They’ve become the people we can’t trust to do things right.
All of them.
All of them except…
the one I voted for. He’s okay (or she’s okay).
But all of those others?