Until the recent Obama years, I really had no interest in watching debates or election coverage.
With the exception of the years that Howard Dean, Al Gore, Ross Perot and Barack Obama ran for president, I generally avoided election coverage, because the candidates all just seemed like a bunch of a**holes with terrible haircuts as far as young me was concerned. (And, well, perhaps my youthful instincts were completely on the nose?)
Back then, I didn’t think any of these goings-on had anything to do with me, worthy candidates or not.
Now that I’m older, I see and feel the impact these politics and politicians have on so many levels of our lives—domestically, internationally and beyond.
Obama offered so much inspiration—for so many of us—that I started becoming politically aware.
And then came Bernie Sanders, a candidate who brought so much hope to so many. And even though he has dropped out of the race, his impact is undeniable. The revolution continues.
Which brings us to now. Today. September 13th, 2016. When I read an article stating that Donald Trump has a five percent lead over Hillary Clinton in Ohio.
And I got scared.
It motivated me to write this blog immediately—my first politically-oriented blog ever.
We cannot let Trump win.
I realize that to many elephant journal readers, this is not news. It’s certainly not news to me. I have felt this way since the very beginning of his running, and the feeling has only grown.
The more news coverage I watch, the more horrified I become that this man could potentially be a leader of this country.
As time went on and I continued to hear the crazy and hateful things he said publicly each day, the more certain I became that it was an impossibility that he could be elected and that people would quickly see through him and immediately discard him as a potential candidate.
Because who could support a man who says such hateful things?
Well, according to today’s Ohio polls, 44 percent of people. If Hillary had 56 percent of the vote as the convex response to that number, I’d still be concerned, but at least she would be in the majority.
But the fact that Hillary has only 39 percent of the vote makes that statistic terrifying.
After reading these polls, I am finding it necessary to add one more voice to the millions urging others not to vote for Trump.
And to be sure to vote for Hillary.
Because Trump is dangerous.
Trump says insulting things about women.
Trump makes racist statements.
Trump is anti-Muslim and anti-Mexican.
Trump has publicly rejected mothers with babies—even the sleaziest of candidates know they should take photographs with babies if for no other reason than to gain popularity!
A friend of mine posted on Facebook the other day:
“I don’t think you can call it the ‘lesser of two evils’ when one candidate is evil and the other one is not actually evil at all.”
(For those of you following the news less than me, this is what people say when talking about voting for Hillary versus Trump.)
Does Hillary have some issues? Sure.
Don’t almost all candidates in history have issues? You betcha.
I don’t think Hillary’s issues (or any other candidate’s issues that I’ve seen) fall under the same category as Trump’s “issues.”
With the things that come out of Trump’s mouth, it feels like the proverbial “elephant in the room” (appropriately enough!) that those in favor of him seem to think everything is “fine” with what he is saying and that he is “speaking his mind” and that they like it.
Speaking his mind. Is that what you call it?
Hillary on the other hand—I see her level of corruption to be equivalent to that of “doping” in the Tour de France. People point the finger at those who get caught doping, when in reality most cyclists are probably doping because they have to in order to be able to compete. Those who take the moral high ground don’t have a chance at winning. So, eventually, the playing field is leveled if everyone is doping.
But Trump? Trump isn’t just doping. Trump invented “dope.”
So, for those of you who are feeling discouraged, futile and are starting to feel like your vote doesn’t even matter—I urge you to vote anyway.
Because while so many things may seem stacked against us (and by “us” I mean voters), apathy won’t help us. In fact, it will certainly harm us.
There is corruption. Maybe things are rigged. And things are definitely corrupt as far as media coverage goes.
But if those who already feel defeated by Trump’s success in the polls just stay home and don’t vote on election day, then we really will be defeated.
“It is better to die trying than to live with doing nothing.”
Author: Rachel Leber
Photo: Jamelle Bouie/Flickr
Editor: Toby Israel