So the main premise of this blog so far has been mainly documentation of distinct moments in my life, but it’d be a disgrace to my predecessors that fought so hard for my right to vote to not voice my opinion on this election.
Tomorrow, November 8th 2016, a new president of the United States of America will be elected. That should be exciting for a young country, but that excitement has turned into confusion, hatred, and pigeonholing. In fact, USA Today newspaper published a special article in honor of the results tomorrow night entitled, “A 12-step plan to cope if your candidate loses on election day.”
It’s kind of weird to think about, but back in the 1800’s when the civil war was being fought, General Lee had enough human decency to accept defeat when he surrendered to General Grant on April 9, 1965. General Grant forbid acts of gloating and celebration in front of their newly defeated enemy. Unfortunately, these acts of civility seem to be all but lost during the current election season of 2016.
Historically, I’ve voted a primarily conservative ballot, but this one changed my views of our two-party system. How is it that so many republicans do not support their own appointed candidate? I took the I Side With quiz more throughout the past 10 months than I ever have for any past election.
Originally, I thought I only had two options of how to fill out my ballot. However, as election day draws ever nearer, I think I actually have 4 choices:
- Donald Trump: Our primarily liberal university hosted a rally last Tuesday and I had the opportunity to attend. Honestly, the rally was filled with a lot of hateful people, and equally hateful protesters; both categorizing supporters into two distinct categories: racist/sexist/homophobic bigots, and deceitful/corrupt/power-hungry liars. The environment was toxic, and I was thankful when I was able to leave. I just don’t understand how what started off as a joke, has turned into such a nightmare.
- Hillary Clinton: The emails, her corruption, her perseverance to one day be the first woman POTUS, she’s a lot to handle. SNL, and late night shows have had a hayday with Clinton purely based on how outrageously “out there” she is. I simply can’t support her politics, especially on abortion.
- Third Party: Some people see voting for a third-party candidate is the same as throwing your vote away. Seeing as third-party candidates such as Gary Johnson or Jill Stein did not have a chance to debate, nor did they even come close to the amount of media coverage their rivals received, it’s hard to make a fair case for voting third party. Josh asked me two moral questions recently:
- If I know you’re going to cast an all democratic ballot, and I cast an all republican ballot, we cancel each other out. What’s the point of us even showing up to the polls besides increasing voter turn out?
- The legitimacy of not being able to lay my head on my pillow knowing that I willingly supported either Trump or Hillary is reason enough to vote third party.
- Not voting: I am ashamed to say this, but I actually considered not voting more times than one. However, I am reminded of all the courageous women that risked their lives so that women would one day have the right to vote. It still sickens me that voter turn-out is less than 30% of the US population. If you haven’t seen the movie, “Iron Jawed Angels” I’d highly recommend it. We had to watch it in one of my Government classes in high school, and it really changed my perspective.
In the end, either Trump or Hillary will win, and it’s my job as a citizen of this fine country, to believe it only happened because God allowed it to. I find uncanny resemblance between this election, and the events that occurred thousands of years ago in Israel. Documented in 1 Samuel 8, we learn that the Israelites wanted God to give them a king to rule over them- so they could be like the other surrounding countries. God warned the Israelites that against this, and in the next chapter, Samuel anoints Saul as the king of Israel. I think something that we can glean from this passage is that in the end, God is still sovereign, and God is still in control. Romans 13:1 says, “Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God.”
The political candidate that is elected tomorrow does not have the power to change hearts and minds the way that our God can.