Every day of this election cycle I am more and more saddened, angered, upset, and disgusted by my fellow Americans. I am drawn to write and share my perspective but it feels like every day there is something new and more offensive, and I just can’t keep up. But recent events have compelled me to put into words my thoughts on this election and its most recent developments.
Namely, we’ve all heard a Republican candidate for President speaking about women as if they are meat. Talking about us like we are an achievement to be conquered not human beings worthy of respect. Worse, he talks about us like we are objects to be assaulted. And while we previously heard him call women pigs or insult them for their physical appearance, and we heard him openly ridicule Hispanics, and disparage a disabled man, it is only now that so many people are outraged. And yet, there are people who heard Donald Trump’s vile description of his actions towards women and they are still defending him. To say I am disgusted is an understatement.
I was shocked when I saw a woman post this to her fellow Trump supporter’s Facebook page with the comment, “I thought this was funny.” Yes, a woman posted this:
The last time I checked 50 Shades of Grey was fiction. And the last time I checked, we as human beings are capable of reading books and watching movies in which illegal/inappropriate/deplorable things happen without condoning those same actions in our real lives. We’ve all watched movies in which one person murders another person. That does not make it OK for Presidential candidates to murder people. This should not have to be stated. These clear truths should be just that…clear. But sadly, they are not.
I have always held strong views on political issues. And I have always been up for a feisty debate. I have friends who are both Republicans and Democrats, and while I’ve always felt strongly that Democrats are more focused on doing the most good for the most people (I posted about this back in 2012) I have always been able to at least understand the opposing side’s viewpoint. And while I was saddened, disheartened, and frustrated beyond belief when Bush “defeated” Gore in 2000 (the first Presidential election in which I was able to vote) I never truly feared for the safety of our nation and world because of Bush’s election.
But this election is no longer about politics. It is about human decency. It is about showing respect for the vast majority of human beings in our world: Women, Muslims, African Americans, Hispanics, refugees, people with disabilities. Nearly everyone fits into one of those categories and if you don’t, you know someone who does. How people can make excuses for and even contemplate voting for a man who so clearly disrespects people who fall into these categories is nauseating.
I understand that Hillary Clinton is a polarizing figure. And I’ve heard and read every argument against her; even the completely false ones. I personally know people who are convinced that when Hillary was first lady that she refused to allow military personnel in the White House in uniform. While I was fairly certain the Joint Chiefs of Staff were never caught on the White House lawn in their underwear while changing into civilian clothes, I figured I would check with a Marine friend of mine. He verified that he personally knows a pilot who flew Marine One for the Clintons and he verified he was in the White House on many occasions, while in uniform, as was every other military person who ever set foot in the White House. Where do these lies come from?
For a moment let’s pretend all the accusations, lies, and rumors about Hillary are true (for the record: They are NOT!) but let’s pretend. Even then, she still doesn’t prefer to write misogynistic tweets at 3a.m. over studying policy proposals and understanding the complexities of our world. She is not publicly ridiculing the vast majority of the world’s population. She does not spew hatred and disrespect. She doesn’t speak cavalierly about nuclear weapons, suggesting the ease with which we should use them and encouraging other Nations to acquire nuclear weapons. She does not praise our enemies. When people compare Hillary and Trump and try to say they are “equally bad,” I know they are misinformed. If Michael Chertoff, the once lead Republican lawyer on the Senate committee investigating Bill and Hillary Clinton’s Whitewater scandal, former Secretary of Homeland Security, and lifelong Republican can vote for Hillary because he truly believes Trump would threaten the security of the United States then I suggest you gather your facts a little more carefully before stating otherwise.
If you’re a one issue voter on something like abortion, because you call yourself “pro life,” how can you vote for a man who so clearly does not value the lives of so many people? This is a man who prefers to watch innocent men, women, and children in Syria continue to suffer than welcome them into our Country with open arms. He is a man who believes a woman who is so desperate, scared, and hopeless that she seeks an abortion should be punished. Trump is a man who believes killing the family members of terrorists, just because of who they are related to is acceptable. He thinks he should be able to grab a woman’s “P***y” just because he’s famous; a gesture that devalues that woman’s life. This is not a man who respects life. If you’re “pro life” and voting for Trump you’re really “pro unborn child” and anti nearly everyone else.
This election I am truly struggling to understand and respect those I know who plan to cast their vote for Donald Trump. They are knowingly casting a vote for a misogynistic, Islamophobic, racist, xenophobic, narcissist. They are voting for a man who shows little respect for people who are different from him and who poses a sincere threat to the safety of our nation and world because of his denunciation of facts and preference for ratings over logic and careful calculation.
I’m not asking those who disagree strongly with Hillary’s views to vote for her. I’m just asking that they not vote for Trump. Though, I can honestly say that if Trump was the Democratic candidate (because let’s be honest, he was a democrat until he decided he had a better chance of winning as a Republican) and any other recent Republican was his opponent (Romney, Kasich, any of the Bushes, yes, even Cruz) then I would vote for his opponent because I could not take any part in risking his Presidency. But, I can understand how one’s principles would make it difficult to vote for a candidate with whom they truly disagree, and I respect that. But if you insist on voting for Trump despite what we clearly know about the type of man he is, then I cannot and will not ever understand you. A vote for Trump is a vote against humanity and I for one cannot respect people who would cast such a vote. For our Nation, for our world, for your daughters and sons, and for the people who deserve so much better than this man, please, do not vote for Donald Trump.