Today I did a terrible thing. Well, no, two terrible things:

1. I verbally attacked a nonvoter.
2. I lied to a friend.

The Attack: Everyone reading this knows that turnout in this election was critical, and we also know that we fell well short of the mark in voter mobilization. And therein lies my greatest shame: neither did I press my case well enough, nor behave graciously post-election.

To the nonvoter I know I was vicious, needlessly so. For this I am deeply remorseful. I resorted to the lowbrow tactics of the left. I castigated the nonvoter, relentlessly hammering the idea that by sitting the election out, she was assisting in the demise of the country. In that instant I was all of the things I hate most about so-called progressives. Sadly, I saw this in hindsight. Now I must make amends, for the nonvoter on whom I unleashed my fury was my Mother.

The Lie: Ahh the mixed political relationship. All other things being equal, this is the most dangerous blend. Faced with the choice between losing a nearly lifelong friendship and lying through my teeth, I chose the lie.

I said I voted for the opposition.

I didn't, of course, but where was the harm, I asked myself? Why not tell this one lie to keep the friendship? And so I lied. And the friendship remains intact. Once more I am ashamed; I sold myself out. I could give a hundred reasons and not one would be sufficient. I kept my friendship. The irony is that to do so, once again, I resorted to leftist tactics; it was shameful.

When I was very young my Father said to me that I should pick my battles. He also said that life wasn't fair. He is right on both counts. So tomorrow I will solemnly apologize to my Mom, and she will understand that my anger was born of angst. I will cheerfully lie to my friend, and he will think he's won. Life will go on.

Inside I will mourn. Mourn the loss of self-control and self-respect in both cases. Mourn the blinders that seem to pervade our society. Mourn the divisiveness, the fear, and the hatred that permeate our dying ideals. We must allow ourselves to fail sometimes, and then look up, look ahead, and work hard to be, and do, better.

Today I looked in the mirror and didn't like what I saw. I stood on pride, and failed on principle. Too many of us likely did the same, and now we will reap the whirlwind. Let us pray that we might still right the ship of state. Meanwhile let us always strive to be better; to rise above; to know our strengths and acknowledge our weaknesses; to act on principle and set aside our pride.

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