A little bit of respect can go a long way


Johnhain via Pixabay

Shaking hands is one of the most universal signs of respect.

Jonathan Sulgrove, Opinion Editor

Next month Americans will find out who their next president will be for the next four years.

Although the mainstream media projects former Vice President Joe Biden as the winner, results will not be official until the Electoral College votes on Dec. 14. On that date, millions will celebrate; millions more will feel like it is the end of the world. However, it will not be the end of the world.

We live in a democratic republic, meaning the President will only have executive powers for four years. After that, it is up to Americans to decide if they want the sitting president to retain power.

This year is no different. Americans had a choice between incumbent President Donald Trump (Republican) and former Vice President Joe Biden (Democrat), among other third party candidates. Americans made their choice and now it is time to live with it.

Nevertheless, some Americans are not and have not lived with their collective choice. Even today you can still hear people complaining about how Hillary Clinton should have been president. There are still claims of a Russian disinformation campaign and Democrats even tried to impeach President Trump off of arguably no significant evidence.

What is done is done. We cannot go back in time and change how we acted. Instead, we can change how we act in the future.

We must respect the President and his office, regardless of who the president is and your opinion of them. Political party affiliation does not matter. Religion does not matter. Race does not matter. We are all Americans. We all live under one government that has existed for more than two centuries.

Junior Vinay Joshi understands the significance of the role the President plays. “Whether you agree with the President’s specific agenda or not, there is something to be said about the magnitude of the position they have,” he said.

“Every president wants the best for the country, regardless of their approach for getting there,” Joshi continued. “We owe them respect and a chance to implement their vision once the nation has elected them.”

This is not to say you cannot dislike the President. There is a difference between respecting someone and liking them. According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, to respect somebody means “to consider [them] worthy of high regard,” whereas to like somebody means “to feel attraction toward or take pleasure in [them].” There is an obvious difference between the two.

Not everybody can handle being the president of the United States. It takes skill as well as resolve to manage a country, especially when receiving criticism and slander daily from millions.

However, if the President happened to receive more respect, they could focus more on the job, manage the country better and perhaps garner additional respect.

AP United States Government and Politics teacher Joe Youngbauer realizes the potential impact of respecting the President. It would build “a strong and unified democracy,” he said. “No one is naive enough to think that all Americans are going to see eye to eye on everything, but when there is mutual respect and the mindset to find appropriate ways to compromise we have the opportunity to move forward as a nation.”

And what does disrespecting the President even get you? Definitely nothing you want. Disrespecting those who have authority over you and are working in your best interests will only bring disrespect upon you by your fellow citizens.

Joshi brought up a valid point regarding this idea. “A president will continue to hold office for at least four years after they have been sworn in, so why think negatively of them from the beginning?” he asked. “We need to be open-minded and at least give every POTUS a chance; they were elected by ‘the people’ after all.”

Respect your president. Who they are does not matter. Your opinion of them does not matter. They hold one of the highest, most important positions in our country and they should be remembered in that way.