During the GOP primary season, those of us opposed to Donald J. Trump fought hard for a more rational choice (basically anyone else). What we heard back from the Trumpkins was that they liked Mr. MAGA because: he tells it like it is (he doesn’t); he’s politically incorrect (e.g. rude, vulgar and ignorant); and he gets things done (realistically, as does anyone not in a vegetative state.)
Ever since Trump got the nomination in the bag, however, Trumpkins no longer try to convince us of their idol’s awesome powers. Instead, they confront true conservatives with a single gotcha question: “You don’t want to see ‘Killary’ elected do you? Do YOU?!?” This is when even the most hardened #NeverTrumpers feel some twinge of doubt regarding their resolve. Plus, we’re tempted to acquiesce just because we’re sure the pulsing vein on the Trumpkin’s forehead is about to explode, and we don’t want to be responsible for the mess.
But then we realize that the current dilemma – just like their exploding veins – is not our mess. The Trumpkins ignored our every warning about their ridiculous candidate, and they especially doubted our sacred oaths never to degrade ourselves by voting for Oompah Loompah Grande. The Hillary Presidency will be on their heads, not ours.
And yet, there’s still that twinge. Let me share how I’m dealing with it.
I think about Westboro Baptist Church and the Church of Satan in San Francisco. I am a Christian, and importantly to this discussion, also a Southern Baptist. Therefore, logically, I am not a Satanist. Yet if you asked me which of these two organizations is the lesser evil, I propose it’s the honest devil-worshippers.
If you’re an adult, take a quick look at their respective websites. I’m not saying that the Church of Satan site isn’t spiritually grotesque – it is – but I literally winced when the Westboro Baptist page appeared on my computer screen. The Satanists are what they are … and I am satisfied to have no affiliation with them. But the creatures that comprise Westboro Baptist blasphemously masquerade as Christians, and they have the treacherous gall to claim denominational common ground with me! I see these false Christians as much worse than the Satanists because they hatefully foment misunderstanding of Christ’s Gospel. And I never miss an opportunity to make it clear that good Baptists have nothing to do with them or their repugnant dogma. (And, no, it doesn’t matter if they may be ‘correct’ on a few religious points here or there.)
This same principle applies in choosing between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. I’ve never been a Progressive Democrat and I’m never going to be a Progressive Democrat. They can conduct Black Masses to Big Government as they choose – even going so far as to nominate a real witch as their presidential nominee. As the GEICO ads say, “That’s what they do.” I’m not involved and I don’t care.
But what do Republicans do … or not do? Real Republicans do not think it’s okay to make fun of disabled people, spew loutish comments about women, insult ethnicity… or generally act like a spoiled 10-year old child. They are not magnets to racists and anti-Semites. Real Republican presidential candidates are expected to know something about economics, foreign policy and social issues. And real Republican presidential candidates respect the law and honor our Constitutional Rights. That’s why I must make it clear that what congregated in Cleveland is Trump’s Party and not my GOP (or that of Reagan, Eisenhower, Coolidge or Lincoln). It is Trump and his minions, and not the principled conservative holdouts, who are RINOs in the truest sense of the acronym. Trump befouls conservatism and the Republican brand.
Take heart. If you’re a life-long conservative who doesn’t vote for Trump, and Hillary gets elected, it’s doubtful anyone worthy of your respect will think less of you. But if you go against your conscience and vote for Trump, those very same people may legitimately question if they ever knew you at all. That’s an evil none of us should choose.