I will not vote for Donald Trump to be my President. Nor will I vote for Hillary Clinton. So now that they are the presumptive nominees of their respective political parties, what do I do?
I am not politically savvy nor am I loyal to any political party, although I did recently change my party affiliation from Independent to Republican so that I could vote for John Kasich (and against Donald Trump) in the primary election.
That said, I have always voted Republican because the Republican candidate espoused more views that aligned with my conservative values and beliefs on issues important to me than did the Democratic candidate. While I was not always particularly enamored with the man I voted for, I believed when I cast my vote that he was a far better option for President than the alternative, and I never once questioned whether I was voting for an evil individual.
This year is different. Absent a miracle, evil awaits us on election night in November.
The Republican nominee, Donald Trump, if elected President, will harm our nation. He lacks honesty, morals, integrity, humility and compassion. He is angry and unstable, rude, rash and reckless. He worships the almighty dollar, not the Almighty. Regardless of how you feel about his ever changing political positions, right thinking Americans cannot declare with a straight face that they want their sons to grow up to be like him. If that were so, if our values, beliefs and convictions now resemble those of Donald Trump, then our once great nation is finished.
What’s most disturbing about Trump’s candidacy is not Trump, but the millions of Americans who support him. I understand anger with Washington and politics as usual, but I do not comprehend why people would expect someone who is so angry, unstable and full of hate to fix the problem. And I particularly cannot understand how those who call themselves followers of Christ could disregard His teachings to rally around this frightening potential world leader.
The Democratic nominee, Hillary Clinton, like Trump, lacks honesty, integrity and humility. She is unethical, controlled by greed and above all, her own unrestrained self-interest. Even more than most career politicians, she is willing to politically bed down with the devil himself if he will donate to her political coffers. Mrs. Clinton cannot be trusted. In addition to lacking the basic character and moral fiber needed to be President, the majority of her political views do not match mine, most notably her stance on killing babies. That’s right, I said killing babies, not abortion, because when we hear “abortion” we tune out, but when we hear “killing babies,” our collective conscience wakes up.
Clinton declared last month on NBC’s Meet the Press, in response to a question about abortion restrictions and the rights of the unborn that “the unborn person doesn’t have Constitutional rights.” Come again, Hilary? Are you saying that some people don’t have Constitutional rights in America, like the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness? I would like to hear one of my liberal women friends who are grandmas tell me that they would defend their daughter’s or daughter-in-law’s right to kill the grandchild they are now cradling in their arms, provided she had done so before the doctor pulled the baby from her womb. A vote for Clinton is a vote for continuing to deny the Constitutional right to life to the most helpless and vulnerable persons of all.
For the last 30 years the public election process in America has been marked by voter apathy, evidenced by often historic low voter turnouts where millions of citizens could not be troubled to simply fill out a ballot and exercise their hard fought for and won right to vote for those who govern them. This November, however, I anticipate record voter turnout by citizens eager to take out the lesser of these two evils.
The problem is that voting for the lesser of two evils is still a vote for evil.
When we vote for a person, we delegate to him or her the authority to govern us, the right to act toward others – other citizens and other nations – on our behalf. Of course candidates can and often do lie and make promises they do not keep. They can fool us into believing they have good moral character and integrity and unfortunately, we discover the truth about them too late, after we have already voted them into office. But to hand over our authority to someone we already know to be foolhardy, dangerously unpredictable, unethical and untrustworthy makes us culpable for their actions. If we are aware of the danger associated with a candidate, and yet go ahead and vote for him or her anyway, we will suffer for our stupidity.
We must vote if we value freedom. If we do not vote, we are telling the brave men and women who died that we might live free, and who guaranteed our privileged right to govern ourselves, that their sacrifice does not matter – indeed, that freedom doesn’t matter.
So how do we participate in the election process without endorsing moral evil?
We overcome evil by good. We vote for the person who at least appears to have and lives by a good moral compass, good judgment and good faith. We cannot justify endorsing a bad candidate for President by claiming that the alternative is worse. Wrong is wrong. While there will never be a perfect political candidate, we cannot vote for evil, even if everyone tells us we have to in order to avoid an even greater evil.
As a Christian, I believe God will hold me accountable if I vote for a person whose life and actions demonstrate contempt for the teachings of my Savior. I am not responsible for the outcome of the election but only for voting my conscience. At this point, it looks like that means I will be writing in a candidate who, absent divine intervention, will not be the next President. Regardless, I must concern myself with pleasing my Lord, not my fellow man and certainly not any political party. I must vote for the candidate whose views best align with my own values, beliefs and convictions, which I hope are firmly rooted in the Word of God.
No matter who is chosen as the 44th President of the United States of America, God will still be on His throne following the election. While soon we may no longer be one nation under God, God will still be sovereign. “There is no wisdom, no insight, no plan that can succeed against the Lord.” Proverbs 21:30.