Post by Joseph M –
Thanksgiving is surely a great time for reflection. Rob’s post, Michael Otterson’s guest article in the Washington Post, and this recent post by Joanna Brooks have all caused me to think on this past election season and the part that we Mormons for Obama played in it. I am thankful for the community of saints who have come together here and the amazing amount of good that we have accomplished. Not only have we demonstrated our support for President Obama, but we also have shown the world that Mormons are a diverse group of individuals with varied political ideas and persuasions. (And I fully acknowledge that this post is starting off a tad bit self-congratulatory.)
I have especially enjoyed hearing the many stories that folks have shared about their Mormons for Obama t-shirts and bumper stickers. Kelly ended up in an Italian online news journal with her shirt. And another example: Butch in Pennsylvania emailed me describing reactions that he has received from people. He takes his sister shopping and sometimes will wait in the car, and he has enjoyed watching the positive reaction of the passersby. (This kind of sounds like missionary work.)
He writes, “I have to laugh at stop lights here – seeing people take pictures and some honking their horns.” Of course not everyone was happy with his bumper sticker: “one lady pulled up next to me and shook her finger at me, scolding me!” But Butch isn’t alone in seeing some negative reactions – as we see in this post by Joanna Brooks – but much of the reaction has been positive. And even when it wasn’t, we found it humorous all the same.
In fact, many people found this website and Facebook group because of the bumper stickers on your cars or the t-shirt that you casually wore to the grocery store. One woman emailed that she was tailed down the street, and when she finally exited her car, her follower asked, “where did you get that bumper sticker? I need one!”
Read this wonderful post by Jana Reiss about her thoughts on the bumper sticker and how the conjunction “and” is not enough.
Admittedly, we Mormons for Obama have a lot to be thankful for this season. Also, we were pleased to discover that Mormons actually voted for Obama in higher numbers than those who voted Democrat in 2004 when Bush was reelected. (Or said another way, GW Bush received more Mormon votes than did Romney.) See this article from Business Insider, and thank you to Dave in Seattle for emailing this to us.
I am grateful for a lot this Thanksgiving season. And I am especially grateful to all of the Mormons for Obama out there who stood up for the President (and sometimes made difficult sacrifices) in the midst of a contentious election season that sometimes came closer to home than we would have hoped or anticipated. Please share your stories with us! We would love to hear about your experiences with your t-shirts and bumper stickers! (And Happy Thanksgiving!)