Many were shocked as the results of the election rolled in last semester, watching as state by state voted in favor of Donald Trump. There was notable tension in the air on APSU’s campus that Wednesday morning; those who voted against Trump were somber, while his supporters were silent, save for a sprinkle of red hats here and there.

The election was rough. I had to block some of my friends on Facebook, because looking at their political posts was making me hate them in real life. The election and everything that has happened since has opened up a Pandora’s box of hatred. Everywhere I look, everywhere I go people are fighting.

People have divided themselves into fierce factions, and there is no middle ground. I do not believe that Donald Trump started this hatred, even though I disagree with his politics. The hatred has always been there, and this election exposed it to the world. It is disgusting, and it is pitiful.

I was stunned that Trump won. That is the best way I can explain it. I felt no anger or sadness, but a numbness to the world. And in the year since then, maybe to protect myself, I view the president with a certain sense of numbness because I do not want to be angry all the time. But I do not want to be numb to the world either.

We are humans. We cannot let political parties, the government or the president take that away from us. We are all in the same boat whether we like it or not, and fighting with each other is not going to change that.

I cannot control what the government or the president does, but I can control myself. I can choose to be optimistic. I can choose to be angry. I can choose to lash out. I can choose to ignore everything and retreat. We all have a choice in how we act, a choice free from the president and free from other people. We all still have a choice.