This article is an opinion.
We’ve heard plenty of adjectives to describe the 2020 election. In fact, we are still hearing them.
Words such as fraudulent, corrupt and illegitimate are just some of the more commonly-used ones. In reality, it’s not about any of those things.
What it’s really about is being poor losers. We are all guilty of it. It’s the same in sports as it is politics. We have a built-in human nature response to think if our team or our candidate or favored political party loses, then it must have been because the other side cheated.
In football, we complain about the officiating. In elections, it’s about votes not being counted right. Hey, it doesn’t matter if they were counted multiple times with very little, if any, change in the grand total.
When we don’t like the scoreboard, be it at the end of a game or a contested election, then we cry foul. It hasn’t always been that way, at least not in politics.
Certainly, none of us particularly like it when our candidate loses. I’m the same way, although voting for a third-party candidate in general elections most of the time means I am more used to losing in the end than most.
But we have to be realistic. Just because our candidate loses doesn’t mean the other side cheated or that there was mass corruption.
My philosophy on election results has always been a simple one. I’ll stew over them for a week or so and then suddenly my find starts looking ahead to the next election.
It’s gotten that way for football as well. When one of my teams loses, I get mad for a day but immediately will look ahead to the next week. To me, that’s the best way to handle it.
Besides, we all know nothing is going to change the outcome of the previous game. It doesn’t matter how many officiating mistakes the league office admits to, the outcome is going to stand. It will never be reversed.
When it comes to the 2020 election, some are still hoping for the outcome to be overturned. Some Facebook comments of late (by someone I respect actually) claimed that Donald Trump had actually won Arizona and that Georgia would be the next to move from the Joe Biden camp to the Make America Great Again column.
Folks, it’s not happening. Wishing it so doesn’t make it reality. Oddly enough (or perhaps not oddly) an Associated Press story released the same day as that Facebook post about the Arizona vote outcome, detailed how there were only a small number of cases of repeat votes. There were certainly not enough to change the outcome.
Yet some people continue to cling to hope that Trump is going to return to the White House. We’re not talking about after the 2024 election if he should run then, but we are talking about now, as in 2021.
Of course, being a sore loser is not delegated to just Republicans. Here in Georgia, Stacey Abrams and many of her supporters are still complaining about the 2018 governor’s election. The election was stolen and such, them still claim.
I said at the time the best thing Abrams could do was to say “we fought a good fight but now we have to look ahead.” The fact she made that race so competitive helped turn the tide in Georgia to the point our state now has two elected Democrat US Senators. That was something that would have been unheard of not that long ago.
Not liking the outcome of an election does not mean there was massive fraud. There are always a very small number of votes that can be questioned and challenged. There is nothing wrong with requesting a recount. But at some point, it has to be time to move on and accept what has happened.
Georgia Democrats should be looking at 2022 and not back at 2018. Likewise, Republicans need to be working for 2024 and not hoping against hope that the 2020 presidential election is somehow overturned. Georgia Republicans also need to be very focused on 2022.
It’s not easy accepting defeat but some at some point we have to. Deep down we know it’s true. Let’s put 2020 in the rear view mirror for good and start looking ahead.
Chris Bridges is a former sports editor for The Covington News. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.