*Sigh* Here we go. The post that I never wanted to write. I have been thinking this particular bit over since the primaries first started seeming a bit one- sided.
I want Bernie Sanders’ revolution. I would love for it to start with a surprise presidency this election.
That doesn’t seem likely.
So if a Bernie Sanders presidency isn’t going to happen this election, what does that leave us with? Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump, and a slew of 3rd-party candidates without even the slightest hope of winning this particular election.
So, Clinton or Trump. There is only one answer for this. It has to be Clinton.
Mind, I don’t actually like Hillary Clinton. I don’t believe that she has many strong opinions that aren’t first carefully weighed by her campaign team to see how they will play to various constituents. I do believe that she is strongly influenced by major corporations that will “suggest” certain policies that her cabinet will no doubt adopt.
I don’t believe that she is evil incarnate. I don’t believe that her statements against the LGBTQ community in years past should be held against her when her current policies are leaning towards acceptance. People are allowed to change, and to change their minds. Politicians have to, or else get buried as newer candidates more in-line with the public’s thoughts take the stage. I do absolutely believe that Hillary is shamelessly pandering to stay relevant.
I will emphasize this next bit for importance.
MY PERSONAL FEELINGS ON HILLARY CLINTON HAVE NO BEARING ON THIS ELECTION. TRUMP IS NOT AN OPTION. IT HAS TO BE CLINTON.
By and large, the election of the U.S. President is determined by simple majority. Electoral College notwithstanding. We need to get rid of that, in my opinion, but that is for another time.
A vote for Hillary is +1 point to Hillary, -1 point to Donald Trump. Net +2 gain for the side of human decency. A vote for a third-partier, by comparison, is -1 to Hillary and -1 to Trump, net 0 in the election that matters.
Voting third-party in this upcoming election is the same as not voting.
A third-party candidate will not win this upcoming election. The third parties of the U.S. simply do not have the support, either in different levels of government or in popular eyes, to get anywhere near the voter base needed to be a credible threat to the major parties. They are operating under the faulty logic that the Presidency wins all, rather than trying to get appreciable strength in local elections and Congress. The failings of third parties are a discussion for another time.
Trump is dangerous. Trump is DANGEROUS. There are numerous reasons for why he is a danger for the people of not only the U.S., but the whole world. That, amazing as it is, is not hyperbole.
The fact of the matter is this:
IT’S NOT ABOUT ME.
I am a young adult white male. Ignoring my political, sexual, economic, and religious aspects, the worst thing I personally would have to look forward to in a Trump presidency would be the fall of the economy and getting drafted.
Any number of people I know would be in legitimate danger of losing their lives.
I’m not talking about international terrorism, global war, or economic starvation.
I’m talking about all-natural, home-grown American hate.
Trump has repeatedly defended the actions of his supporters while they have legitimately assaulted or murdered people for having different skin tones, or loving people of the same gender, or presenting as their true gender, or simply being destitute within a certain distance of a privileged neighborhood.
Trump did not create these people. He simply reached out a hand to them and said, “You are in the right. You are right to feel this way about others. Your actions against them are correct. I share your views, and I am allowed to run for president. Join me, and we will live the American Dream.”
These people already existed. They are in every state, in every county of the U.S., and Trump is offering them legitimacy. They are crawling out of the darkest corners of U.S. history, from places where there beliefs are fostered, cherished, shared. If Trump wins, they can point to the White House and say that their actions now have the backing of the highest office in the U.S.
I have personal friends who’s lives are already in danger from the actions of these bigots. If Trump were to win, if he were to stack the highest courts with his nominees and fill Congress with his supporters, then there is no guarantee that my friends would even have a legal right to live.
Is it fair? No. Is it legal? No.
Donald Trump has shown no respect for truth, legality, or proper procedure. There is no reason to think that he would start once in the White House.
There are literally millions of people out there who I don’t know, but whose circumstances match those of my friends.
THIS ELECTION IS ABOUT THE LIVES OF BLACK AMERICANS, OF MIDDLE-EASTERN AMERICANS, OF MEXICAN AMERICANS, OF MUSLIM AMERICANS, OF LGBTQ AMERICANS, OF FEMALE AMERICANS, OF ALL AMERICANS WHO DON’T FIT TRUMP’S WHITE MALE CHRISTIAN CONSERVATIVE MOLD.
People’s lives are at stake. No ideology is worth risking the lives of literally millions of our fellow humans, many of whom won’t have a say in whether their lives are put on the line.
The fact of the matter is this: Hillary Clinton is not nearly as secure in her position as future president as her campaign makes her out to be. We, the Bernie Sanders supporters, need to rally behind her. Not because of her politics. Not because of her personally.
Because we care about human lives. Because we care about human dignity.
I REPEAT: NO IDEOLOGY IS WORTH RISKING MILLIONS OF HUMAN LIVES.
So, please, for the love of all that is humane, don’t cast a “protest vote.” Let Brexit be a recent and telling example of just how tenuous elections can be.
We can still have our revolution. Come Midterm elections, there are an absolutely absurd number of seats becoming open. We elect the ulta-liberals. We elect the democratic socialists. We elect the scientists. We elect the free-thinkers. We elect the people who carry on the dream of Bernie Sanders’ revolution.
Controlling Congress is just as, if not more, important than controlling the Presidency. Given the right Congress, we could push Hillary’s U.S.A. in a far more progressive direction than it is currently leaning. That wouldn’t be possible with Trump.
Voting for Jill Stein or one of the other third-party candidates might seem like an option, but it does nothing to help stop Trump. Sure, you might not be voting for Racism, Bigotry, Lies, Fear-mongering, Hatred, etc. But by refusing to vote against it, you are saying that it is OK. That its existence is less important than your personal moral high ground.
That moral high ground will not be quite so high if Trump wins due to drawing away support from the only legitimate opposition.
Frankly, in an ideal world, I want Jill Stein to back out. To send her supporters to Clinton. Let the Green Party try to get a few people in Congress in order to bring up environmental policy. If she continues in the election, trying to get the 5% vote to get federal funding, then she and her party are prioritizing money for future campaigning over those human lives.
Trump is not an option. Hillary is the only real opposition. So it has to be Hillary.
I will not be the person who walks up to a black family and tells them that their lives are worth less than my political stance.
I beg you all to not be that person either.