To my Republican Friends, with love:
I hope this letter finds you well, although I know you have been better. I see the frustration in your eyes, hear it when you speak. This isn’t what you wanted, but here you are. You’ve been betrayed by your party’s extremists, people that you don’t want to claim. You voted for John Kasich, Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, or Jeb Bush. They hold similar values to you, values that I do not share, but that are important to you. I can respect that. We don’t always agree, hell, we don’t often agree but we share a passion. We all want an America we can be proud of, though it looks incredibly different from each of our perspectives.
Please know that I’m empathetic to the fact that the party you align with, believe in, has been bastardized by a demagogue. You don’t want him, but he’s yours. There’s only one way that you can rid yourselves of him. You vote against him.
You’ve told me that you just cannot do it. Casting a vote for Hillary Clinton goes against everything you stand for. She’s a liar. Where are the emails? What about Benghazi? She’s the establishment. Can’t you recognize the corruption? You sardonically smile and shake your head, because your reasoning is falling on deaf ears. You don’t agree with it, but you know I’ve been voting for Clinton for years.
I just have to know, what are your other options? Gary “Aleppo” Johnson? He knows as much about foreign policy as my babies do. Would you feel safe with him at the helm? I know you would never vote for Jill Stein, so I don’t even need to ask. So that leaves you with four options: Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton, choosing not vote, or a write in which is effectively throwing your vote into the wind.
The idea of not voting makes you ill. You’re a patriot. Voting is your duty as an American citizen. To vote is an honor. America’s democratic process is a pillar that other countries admire. People fought and died for our right to vote. So you’re going to vote, but for who?
You tell me that you could have voted for any other Democratic candidate. If only it wasn’t her you could stray from your party line. I only feel moderately bad about not believing you. After all, you see President Obama in a much different light than I do. He earns my admiration, while drawing your contempt. Do you mean to tell me, if it was possible, you would vote him in for a third term? You acquiesce and say anyone but Obama and Clinton. I sigh deeply not wanting to believe it, but I know that it’s true. Regardless of your discontent, you are going to vote for Trump.
Just know, that when you cast your vote for that twisted, misogynistic, dangerous man, I’m going to hold you accountable. You need to own it. His words are your words. You valued small government, tax breaks, and dreams of economic promise over the maligned and marginalized in our country. You allowed this. You stood by. You had the power to impact this election in a way that I couldn’t, but you chose not to. I guess enough was never enough. Trump never took it to a level you couldn’t condone.
In the end, I hope that Clinton wins and we never have to talk about Donald Trump again. I care too much about you to hold you accountable for a Donald Trump presidency.
All my best,