12 April 2016

#NeverTrump #NeverHillary #NeverGettingOutOfThisOne

I never want to live through a presidential primary like this one ever again.

I've written before about Trump and the horror he instills in me. I think he's a moral black hole and one of the worst things ever to come out of American politics. I will never, ever vote for him. And that makes me different than many other conservatives (and Catholics) who, while opposed to Trump, will still vote for the man over Hillary.

I. Just. Can't.

Three peas in a pod, and Melania.

Let's start with some comparisons:
  • Hillary Clinton is a brazen, habitual liar. Donald Trump is also a brazen, habitual liar. {Do I need to post links for these things? 'Cause I could, but I don't really think these assertions are in question.}
  • Hillary Clinton surrounds herself with thugs and bullies. Donald Trump also surrounds himself with thugs and bullies.
  • Hillary Clinton is a rabid pro-abortion advocate. Trump claims to be pro-life, awfully recently and with nothing but lip service; but he still praises Planned Parenthood, says he'd appoint his radically pro-abortion sister to the Supreme Court, and did irreparable damage to the pro-life image just last week by advocating for the punishment of women who have abortions (he's since equally-ineptly walked it back, but I'm pretty sure we've all gotten a peek behind the curtain and seen that, once again, the Trump has no well-thought-out positions).
So we've covered the areas where I think they're essentially the same. When it comes down to morality, they're both... Simply without any. That is a horrible turn of events for this nation. The idea that we can't put up a candidate with a stronger moral compass than Hillary Clinton (and when we started with the strongest Republican field in my lifetime) is enough to make me want to sit in the corner and cry indefinitely, but that's where we seem to be.

But what about things like international relations?

I was less-than-impressed with Clinton's tenure as Secretary of State. She laundered bribes from unfriendly countries through the Clinton Foundation, she abandoned our people in Benghazi when they were under attack and then lied to the families about what happened and why. She set up a sketchy home-brew email server in her bathroom which was vulnerable to hacking and ought to have been federally indicted long ago. She was basically a disaster.

Here's the thing, though: I'm still pretty sure that Donald Trump, Most Powerful Man in the World, has the potential to be significantly worse.

Leave aside for the moment that he insisted from the debate stage that we intended to order the military to commit war crimes by targeting the innocent family members of terrorists. Leave aside his thinnest-ever skin. He's also dangerously susceptible to flattery, as proven by his little mutual-admiration society with Vladimir Putin. He says whatever flits through his head, with a special emphasis on being insulting and gauche. Diplomacy is not likely to be his strong suit, by which I mean: I give his hypothetical presidency three months before we're teetering on the brink of WWIII.

"Nuclear armageddon" is worse than "disaster."

He continually claims that he'll make up for the areas where he is weak -- insofar as he admits that he's less than outstanding at anything -- by "hiring the best people." Have we seen any evidence that he knows what "the best people" look like? His campaign manager, Corey Lewandowski, has been recently arrested for assault on a reporter. His campaign in Colorado was so disorganized that they failed to win a single delegate and are reduced -- "reduced" -- to trying to make hay out of voter suppression, when in fact there was none.

Let's stop trying to place the blame for Trump's ascension on the "establishment," or on the media, or anywhere else it doesn't belong. Trump voters are grown adults with agency, and moral culpability. Voting for a deeply flawed candidate (which is the kindest description I can muster) as a stand-in for waving a middle finger in the face of the GOP, writ large, is childish, morally bankrupt and dangerous.

There's nothing I can do about this but pray. If your state has already voted, there's nothing you can do about this but pray. If your state hasn't yet voted, please don't sit home and hope someone else will get us out of this. I'm not sure if a vote for Trump is a vote for Hillary (although I strongly suspect as much), but either way it is a vote for depravity.

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