I've been pretty outspoken this election season. Apart from having always been interested in politics, I've felt a special need to be involved this year because of how it's developed. As someone trained in history, I've been seeing historical parallels that couldn't be ignored.
In a little more than ten weeks, it will be Election Day in the United States, and when day breaks on November 9, the most unusual election season in American history will finally be over.
I'm declaring it over now.
Unless you've been living in a cave in the remotest jungles of Borneo and attempting to avoid all contact with the outside world, you know who the candidates are. You know what they stand for. You know who their followers are (and, as the saying goes, by their friends ye shall know them).
Nothing I can say or do is going to change anyone's mind at this point, and I'm frankly tired of trying. And if you haven't made up your mind by now, I don't know what else I can say.
If you honestly believe there's some kind of equivalency between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, you haven't been paying attention. Trump has condoned violence by his supporters, regularly suggests violating the Constitution, and blatantly panders to white supremacists. The GOP convention had all of this on display, and more. Someone on Reddit, of all places, compiled a list of things said by Trump, and it's chilling. You can find it here.
Meanwhile, people are opposed to Hillary because she made some speeches to Goldman Sachs, supported the war in Iraq, and is tight with the Establishment.
Sorry, but if Hillary Clinton is the lesser of two evils, it's like comparing dandruff to terminal syphilis. I'll take the dandruff.
If Hillary doesn't meet your progressive purity test, too bad. Look at the GOP and see how well their conservative litmus tests have worked out for them.
And, despite all your Stein fantasies and Johnson daydreams, the next President will either be Trump or Clinton. Pick one. There is no way, mathematically or electorally, that the Greens or Libertarians will elect a President, except in the sense of helping one of the two major candidates as spoilers. In an ordinary election, between Clinton and a non-insane Republican (e.g., Dole in '96), I'd say fine, vote for the third party. But this is not that kind of election.
If Trump wins, do not count on the Constitution to save you. Strongmen are not noted for their respect for constitutional niceties, whether you're talking about Hitler, Mussolini, Franco, Stalin, Idi Amin, Hafez Assad, or Robert Mugabe. By 1938, there probably weren't many people in Germany glad that they voted for Ernst Thälmann or Ludwig Kaas in 1932 because Otto Wels of the Social Democrats just didn't meet their litmus tests. Votes matter.
And no, I'm not saying Trump is Hitler. Trump is Trump, and Trump is a fascist by any reasonable definition of the word. He ignores facts, lies continuously, condones violence, blames all our problems on minorities like Mexicans and Muslims, calls for the jailing of his political opponents, and says only he can rescue this country from its dire situation.
Just this morning, he said he hoped that the Russians had Clinton's emails. When pressed on that, he told reporter Katy Tur to "be quiet." (Original link dead; alternate link here: https://youtu.be/A4tXVLFep3M
Can you imagine the kind of Supreme Court justices Trump would nominate? And how easily they'd slide through nomination with a Republican Congress?
So don't talk to me about overcoming fear. There are damn good reasons to fear a Trump presidency.
No, Hillary isn't my dream candidate, but she's qualified and experienced. Same goes for Tim Kaine. Each one is a better choice than their Republican counterparts.
And with that final word, I'm ending my political posts and tweets for this election season. I won't be engaging further on the subject for the sake of my own mental health. You have the information you need; I can do no more. The people will make up their minds, and the people will speak.
Meanwhile, I'll be preparing for the worst-case scenario, because sometimes that's what life gives you. But one last time, I beg of you:
Please, don't let it come to that.