For the first time in my voting life I will not cast a vote for a major party candidate. The reasons on their face are simple. I am in strong disagreement with virtually every stance the Democrats have taken. The Republican nominee has shown no substantive policy except for building a wall, which is a ludicrous proposition financially, ecologically, and logistically. However, my opposition to both nominees runs much deeper.
Both candidates are despicable human beings. To enumerate their “character flaws” would consume enough time to get through their first term in office; if examples are necessary, simply ask a supporter of one to describe the other. To describe them as “character flaws” would be like like saying the Hindenburg had a rough landing, but euphemisms are the best alternative to causing myself a great deal of depression.
The arguments against my decision to abstain from voting seems to fall into 3 categories:
- You must vote for the lesser of two evils. At least X isn’t Y.
- If you don’t for X, than you are voting for Y.
- If X wins, we will get all the bad things X stands for. At least with Y, there is a chance that advisers will control the candidate and less bad things will happen.
The answer to the first argument should be apparent; the lesser of two evils is still evil. The answer to the third argument is similar to a prime cause of bad marriages; the chances of your spouse changing bad behavior after marriage are the proverbial slim and none. Let’s call it the difference between “Hope and Change” and “Hope He’ll Change.”
It is proposition to the second argument that causes me the greatest anxiety. It carries the same non sequitur foolishness as the e-mail promising God’s blessings and wealth if you pass it on, or God’s wrath and devastation if you don’t. A vote is an act of positive affirmation.
When all is said and done, the results merely state this number of votes for X and this number of votes for Y. Quick review: “Votes for X or for Y.” There is no place on the ballot that says check here if you are trying not to vomit while voting for X so that Y will have a greater chance of losing 1/129,000,000 of the total. There also is no place on the ballot that says check here if you want to vote against X or Y.
Ted Cruz urged me to vote my conscience. My conscience tells me neither candidate has a single redeeming value. My conscience tells me I can not vote for either. My friends tell me, despite his qualifications, that Ted Cruz is either “creepy” or “unlikable.” If only someone had put my angst into words… oh, wait, they did! “To thine own self be true, And it must follow as the night the day, thou canst not be false to any man.” Hamlet, Act I, Scene 3.
So it is with a clear conscience and somewhat lighter mood I abrogate my presidential voting duty and turn my attention to the down ballot in my own state, and pray for God’s intervention and protection for my country and my family.