This is a post about politics. I don’t think I’m going to change anyone’s mind, but I’m going to write this anyway. Feel free to walk away now if this is not your thing.
I remember in 2008 and 2012 that there were republicans who made outrageous claims about what our country would be under Barack Obama. They said that he would institute Sharia Law. They said he’d take all the guns. They said he would single handedly destroy the country. I rolled my eyes until I thought they would fall out because the Barack Obama I knew wanted the United States to be successful. He wanted to build jobs and boost the economy and give us health care. He gave me hope for a future that I wanted for this country.
And almost 8 years later, he hasn’t instituted Sharia Law (because he’s not a Muslim, which we knew all along). He didn’t take any guns, even though arguably he should have. He helped rebuild the economy. He helped create hundreds of thousands of jobs. He provided healthcare to children and families. Yep, maybe the Affordable Care Act has issues (which, overwhelmingly, are the fault of the insurance companies who put their profit above all else) and maybe his tax plan doesn’t favor the wealthy, but this country is better than it was 8 years ago. Period. This is agreed upon by historians, economists, military generals and most reasonable people. We don’t have to agree on this, but statistically, we’re better off than we were 8 years ago.
And now it is election time again, and I feel strangely like I think Republicans felt in 2004 and 2008. Hillary is slightly favored to win, but Trump is a huge threat, and I am terrified. And I am trying to withhold some dramatics on this because some of it is certainly not based in reality, but at the same time, a Trump presidency promises some very troubling things.
I am concerned that he is a huge threat to the LGBTQ community in this country. He has vowed to nominate a justice to the supreme court who would oppose marriage equality. His vice president wanted to make requesting a marriage license a crime for gay couples and he supports conversion therapy for gay teens, which has been shown to drastically raise suicide rates in these kids. They want to walk us backward several years and overturn marriage equality. They want to allow states to decide, which will prevent families in states like Utah from being able to be married or receive the same benefits as straight couples. This will harm families- adults and children alike.
I am concerned about Trump’s relationship with Russia and with China. I’m worried that he does not have any understanding of foreign affairs and that his willingness to taunt and make threats to nuclear countries is putting a lot of people in potential danger. Do I think we will be bombed by these countries? Probably not. But might it cost us allies that could be important in the future? Yes. Definitely. And might it eventually lead us into wars we don’t need to be in? Yes.
I am concerned that Trump’s plan of using tax breaks for the wealthy only and trickle down economics, which has never worked and which helped lead us into the great recession, will undo all the economic growth of the last 8 years. Economists across the country have agreed that cutting taxes on the wealthy will only benefit the wealthy. This seems like an obvious move for a billionaire businessman who has done everything he can to avoid paying taxes, legally, I realize, for several decades.
I am so far past concerned that I can no longer see concerned in my rear view mirror, of Trump’s health insurance plan. Allowing insurance companies to cross state lines will definitely drive competition, but with the abolition of the ACA, companies will once again be allowed to charge women more, they will no longer offer free/affordable birth control (and they want to defund Planned Parenthood at the same time), college grads who are still finding a good job will lose the coverage under their parents. And people like me will be excluded or charged astronomical rates because we have pre-existing conditions. We will be prevented from getting health insurance in any affordable way because we are the ones who will use it. Because the insurance companies won’t make as much money on us because they’ll actually have to pay for things. My 4 year old son will not be able to get insurance if his father loses his job (which, if our health care system crashes, is a possibility) because when he was 10 months old he had a traumatic brain injury.
I’m concerned that Trump shows a complete and utter disrespect for women. If one single woman came forward and credibly accused a man of sexually assaulting them, that would be concerning. But when we have a presidential candidate, on tape, admitting to sexually assaulting women, and tens of women coming forward accusing him of doing what he said he did, I cannot dismiss that. Maybe it won’t impact his job performance, but how can I, as a woman, expect Donald Trump to fight for my rights- for equal pay, for equal insurance coverage, for childcare assistance, for anything, when he shows a complete and utter lack of respect for women? How can he lead a country where women make up half the population? How anyone, literally any woman on this earth or anyone who cares about a woman, could ever overlook this astounds me.
Hillary Clinton is not perfect and I will not pretend that she is.
She has admitted to making mistakes with her emails and maybe that’s off-putting to some people. But I’m assuming that you are also calling for Colin Powell to be investigated, as he also used a private email server when he was Secretary of State. And I’m assuming you’re calling for George W Bush and Dick Cheney to also be investigated as they deleted hundreds of thousands of emails after they were subpoenaed, and likely, many of them continued information about the Iraq war that was started on false presences. If you are only outraged about Hillary Clinton, you are either extremely ignorant of actual current events, or you are a hypocrite. Take your pick.
She was Secretary of State during the attack in Benghazi and she first, erroneously reported that the attack was related to a movie. She was wrong, she has admitted that, and provided all the requested information. She has been investigated up, down and in-between, and to the tone of thousands of dollars and hours, and found to be innocent in any wrong doing. And if you are calling for her imprisonment for this, I assume you are calling for the imprisonment of Colin Powell and Condaleezza Rice, under whom there were 11 and 9 embassy attacks, respectively. If this is your hill to politically die on, you better be calling for the investigation of Powell and Rice, or once again, you’re a hypocrite.
She’s a woman. And if that’s why you’re not voting for her, then you are a shitty human being. I am not sorry for saying it.
She stood by her husband after he had multiple affairs and he has been accused of sexual assault. Definitely we shouldn’t re-elect Bill Clinton, because he is not respectful of women, but if you are really punishing Hillary for staying with her husband and not punishing Trump for cheating on his wives, then, once again, you are a hypocrite.
Hillary Clinton is one of the most qualified candidates for president that we’ve ever had. She was first lady, which gave her a much better understanding of the stresses and procedures of the presidency than most politicians have. She was a two term New York Senator. She was Secretary of State. She has fought her way up from the bottom, from modest beginnings, through law school, as a public defender, all the way up to the precipice of the presidency.
If you simply disagree with Hillary’s policies in the same way I disagree with Trump’s, then it makes perfect sense that you wouldn’t vote for her and I don’t think anyone is asking you to do so. But if you are buying into sensationalized news stories from alt-right websites, and that’s your reason for not voting for Hillary, you need to take a hard look at your choices and your understanding of what’s really at stake in this election. Read the reports from experts in economics and military strategy and civil rights. Turn off Fox News (turn off MSNBC if you’re watching that too) and read stories from other news sources, look to news sources abroad. Look at what the world is saying, because aside from Russia, they are telling you to run, screaming, away from Donald Trump. And that should mean something.
There is no question that this election is historic, I just hope that it is historic for the right reasons, rather than for the wrong choice.