Posted on October 13, 2016
This is probably the nastiest and most negative campaign season since John Adams and Thomas Jefferson were at each other’s throats in the 1800 election. The difference this year is that instead of two generally respectable people running against each other, there are two despicably horrible candidates. On one side, you have the Republican nominee who still isn’t a known quantity on conservative issues who is a vulgar and offensive individual. On the other hand, you have a corrupt, morally bankrupt politician who should be running a chain gang, not the country.
In the past, when I wasn’t happy with either choice I could look further down the ticket for another candidate worth voting for. However, even the Libertarians don’t provide a viable option this year. As of this writing, I’m completely skipping filling in a bubble for a presidential candidate. Because of this, I’ve been told that if Clinton wins it’s my fault. I reject this kind of thinking and I’ll explain why.
First of all, if Clinton wins, the Republicans have no one but themselves to blame. The party chose such a flawed candidate that they can’t push off their loss on those of us with integrity in voting (that’s not to suggest Trump voters aren’t voting with integrity). I vote for candidates that fit within the views, values, beliefs and morals I want in a candidate. I’m not a single issue voter. If I were, I’d probably vote for Trump on the 2nd amendment alone. However, his views on the 4th amendment – another issue important to me – completely nullify that position. I voted for Ted Cruz in the primary. That isn’t why I’m not voting for Trump. I didn’t vote for Romney in the last primary, but I voted for him in the general. So, don’t accuse me of having sour grapes that “my candidate” didn’t win and I’m butthurt over it. Republicans knew about Trump’s history cozying up to Democrats and having very progressive views on issues ranging from gun control to health care as recently as 2014. So, they knew better.
Trump’s history with women is well-known, so that shouldn’t have been a surprise. He never knew he was ever going to be a politician so he never covered his ass the way politicians like to do. I’m not excusing what he says he did, but let’s face it; he’s not alone in his indecency with women. There are a lot of hypocrites in both parties that are using this most recent “revelation” to attack the nominee, but especially in the Democrat party. Bill Clinton needs to simply shut his yap, lock himself in a closet, and not come out until November 9th. Hillary Clinton, the enabler, also has no room to talk for covering for her husband and attacking his accusers. Obama shows off his erections to a fawning media and shouldn’t throw his rocks in his glass house.
Republicans shouldn’t apologize for Trump. While there’s no way to prove that what Trump says he did actually happened short of someone a video of it, the kind of language shouldn’t be tolerated. We shouldn’t try to waive it away by saying, “it’s nothing compared to what the Democrats do.” Ever heard of “two wrongs don’t make a right?” What we’re seeing right now is the difference between the Republicans and Democrats. The Democrats embrace sleaze, corruption, and immorality. They rally around it and practically encourage it. They don’t care how repugnant their politicians. It’s all a part of the platform. On the other hand, Republicans typically don’t tolerate that kind of behavior in its members and will be quick to criticize it. They try to portray themselves as the party with a monopoly on morality. They won’t tolerate those within their ranks that make them look bad. Bad behavior doesn’t make Democrats look bad…to other Democrats.
What Republicans should be doing is criticizing and castigating Trump for what he did 11 years ago, understand that he apologized for his inexcusable behavior and then move on to attacking the much worse candidate without pretending it wasn’t a big deal. After all, Clinton lied to the FBI, lied the American people, broke the law in maintaining her private server, threatened national security and broke the law in sharing extremely classified information on non-secure systems, and was responsible for the deaths of four Americans in Benghazi. And that’s only recently. There’s also Travelgate and Troopergate. Clinton is probably the only person I can think of who has more dead friends, coworkers, acquaintances and employees than anyone I know – including combat soldiers. There’s Vince Foster, Luther “Jerry” Parks, and about 42 others. Granted, this falls more within the realm of conspiracy theories, but name one other politician (or anyone for that matter) that has this many suspiciously dead people close to them.
As bad of a candidate as Clinton is, that isn’t a reason to vote for Trump. No one should ever cast a vote AGAINST someone they despise. How often are the Republicans going to complain about their nominee being the “lesser of two evils.” And it seems as if the “conservative” nominees continue to get less and less so. Each has been worse than the last (though I believe McCain was much worse than Romney). In fact, everything that Trump is in trouble for right now – adultery, crude language and behavior, etc – is everything the Republican Party claims to despise. They were the party of family values, remember? Meanwhile, Republicans and Democrats are both so bad that each side is reduced to scare tactics about what will happen if the “other side” wins as the most compelling reason to vote FOR their side. “If Hillary is elected, we lose the Supreme Court.” “If Hillary is elected, we lose the 2nd amendment.” Think about that folks. If you can intelligently analyze that statement, you’ll know that’s not possible unless you allow it to be. If Clinton or the Supreme Court want to see another Civil War, mess with our right to keep and bear arms. If you’re afraid that the 2nd amendment is in danger if a particular politician gets elected, it simply means you’re a coward who won’t defend it when the time comes.
What if the Supreme Court or Clinton takes away your rights? What are you REALLY going to do? Nothing. You’ll whine for four more years to elect another lesser of two evils. I’ve found many Republicans fit in this category anyway. Come to think of it, most Americans do. I’ve seen it in all the Republicans who attack those of us who refuse to ID when stopped for open carry. I’ve seen it in all the Republicans that believe in universal background checks and mandatory training and licensing. It’s no longer about “I’m the best candidate” and more about “I’m not the other candidate.” It doesn’t seem many people are voting for Clinton or Trump, but against Clinton or Trump.
This brings me back to the original claim that, if Clinton wins, it’s my fault and the fault of others like me who are justifiably disgusted at our choice of candidates. Even the third party candidates suck. Jill Stein is only slightly better than Clinton, but still a complete airhead who is worse the rest of the lineup. Johnson is a clown without make-up who is more Republican than Trump is, but definitely isn’t a true Libertarian. Constitution Party candidate is only on the ballot in 24 states, so that’s a non-starter. Independent candidate Evan McMullin looks like a great option and is either on the ballot or a certified write-in candidate in all 50 states.
There’s this narrative that “not voting for Trump is like voting for Clinton” or “not voting for Clinton is a vote for Trump.” I see it differently. Not voting for Trump is not voting for Trump…or Clinton. And vice versa. To suggest that my vote enables one candidate over another suggests that the candidate automatically had my vote to being with. On the contrary, my vote is earned and not to be taken for granted. Everyone should feel that way about their vote. Too many people focus on the (R) or the (D) and will vote for a watermelon if it was the nominee. So, me not voting for Trump doesn’t mean that it’s one less vote for the Republican nominee that benefits the Democrat nominee. I have NEVER voted party line. Ever. I educate myself on candidates and vote based on the individual. Most of the time that has been a Republican, but many times it was a Libertarian or independent candidate.
I would argue that those who subscribe to the “lesser of two evils” or “not voting for x is a vote for y” philosophy are willing victims of media and two-party brainwashing. Each has convinced us that “this election is the most important election ever” because one party may be elected over the other party. Each accuses the other of destroying this country. The irony is that both are actually right. The two-party system has done nothing but plunge this country into virtual bankruptcy, destroyed our monetary system, made Americans more dependent on government, infringed on our civil rights, and passed laws controlling literally every aspect of our lives. Republicans are the party of big government on the right and Democrats are the party of big government on the left.
In conclusion, if Trump loses in November, don’t blame me. Blame your candidate. Blame those who voted for him in the primary. My vote doesn’t matter until I go into that booth and vote for someone. There is no bubble that says, “AGAINST Clinton” or “AGAINST Trump.” When you go into that booth, you are voting FOR a candidate and there isn’t a single candidate for president this year that I feel has earned my vote. That doesn’t mean I’m not going to vote. It simply means that I’m skipping that first bubble and moving on. My refusal to vote is a vote.
Let’s face it – my vote wouldn’t matter if I voted for either candidate; we’re screwed either way. You may blame me for not voting for your candidate, but you can’t blame me for what happens for the next four years either, whether good or bad. Perhaps if Trump is elected, he’ll change my mind in four years, but I doubt it. If I’m wrong, I’ll be man enough to admit it when the time comes.