The Day Politics Went Dark


Our lives have become filled with negative things – ugly things we do our best to bury deep. Lately, it’s been hard. Take a look around Facebook. Or, even worse, Twitter.

But the eclipse, I would argue, changed it all. For one day, politics wasn’t the focus. Yes, we should all still care what President Trump says and does, but the distraction was – in a word – welcome.

Last week, I was scrambling to order glasses in time. My husband may be the scientist, but the eclipse offered something so rare, so human.

I craved a reason to look up.

So we packed the car, hyped the kids, and drove two hours to Neeses, South Carolina. A Piggly Wiggly offered the perfect spot for our viewing: bathrooms and plentiful parking.

But I found something under the unforgiving August sun that I didn’t expect. Every single person we encountered was happy to be alive – excited even.

Some offered us a better spot for viewing. Some shared their pinhole projections. And some simply asked where we were from.

I’m telling you, for the two hours we waited and watched, I saw a completely different America than the one I too often read about behind the screen.

Different races. Different beliefs. Different political affiliations. That eclipse equalized all of us. And we valued the life around us in a genuine way.

We’re all in this together.

My children loved the spectacle, and, I’ll admit, it was the most surreal moment I have ever encountered.

But, if I’m honest, I think it was the people who took a chance – on Piggly Wiggly, on threatening clouds, on unknown human interaction – that darkened the politics.

As I looked around one last time before our departure, I knew the pep rally for our commonness may be over – that we would soon re-enter the illuminated world that challenges.

But I felt encouraged.

And the token town resident thanked us one final time before we drove away.


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8 thoughts on “The Day Politics Went Dark

    1. I don’t blame you. Even with rich inspiration, I took the entire month of July off from FB and Twitter. It did the heart some good!

      My husband used to work at NASA. He’s been telling me for weeks, “Don’t worry, NASA will take some cool pictures!”

      And, you know, they did 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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