Sunday, July 24, 2016

Which Evil Do We Pick? This Year, the Lesser

I stand by everything I've said about Hillary Clinton, but will probably vote for her anyway. None of the insults Hillary supporters have hurled my way were persuasive. But a few things were. I am disgusted on some real primal level by Trump's call to ban Muslims from entering the country. I’ve heard he’s since modified it, but that it could even enter his mind is abhorrent, even more abhorrent than school closings entering Hillary’s.

Everything I read suggests the DNC was in the bag for Hillary. Like many others, I was disgusted from the beginning at how Bernie Sanders was treated by both them and the mainstream press. The system is rigged and the superdelegates are there for no reason other than to assure it remains that way, thwarting the will of the people if necessary. They've chosen to stand by that system. I have never really felt I had to hold my nose to vote before, as so many people have. But I've been moved by a few things. 

Fred Klonsky, in a blue state like me, said we needed to pile on against Trump whether or not our votes affected the outcome. That was the very first argument to vote for Hillary that I found remotely persuasive. Donald Trump is really such a vile person he needs to be repudiated as strongly as possible. Even my meaningless blue state vote, perhaps, could be used as a point against him and his vomit-inducing agenda. The Washington Post calls him a menace to democracy, and democracy's in bad enough shape without the likes of him placing his ass print in it.

His penchant toward personal vendetta toward anyone who dares disagree with him, including members of his own party, suggests a juvenile mindset. His regular dissents into name-calling, that everyone's a loser, say to me that he's a junior high school student with a shiny tie. It's pathetic that we buy this person as a potential leader. Clearly all this Common Core stuff is failing to make us think.

But what really changed my mind was having several teachers argue with me on Facebook in defense of the ban on Muslims. I know what stereotypes are, and when you say we cannot trust an entire group of people, over a billion people, to enter our country---that is one hell of a stereotype. And when you act on it, that's the textbook definition of discrimination.

Where are we, in 2016, when teachers openly endorse stereotypes and discrimination? Not anyplace I particularly want to be. I'm personally horrified to see my brother and sister educators, all of whom ought to know what it is to be stereotyped (for example, from Donald Trump Junior) indulging the same sort of nonsense we expect from the talking heads on Fox News.

Another thing that changed my mind was when a friend of mine from Pakistan told me she feared for the safety of her children. Why should she have to live like that? How can we allow an avowed bigot to be chief executive of our country?

That's something I'm very willing to work against. If UFT decides to phone bank for Hillary in swing states, perhaps on behalf of AFT, I will be there. I will bring people with me. I hope they aren't just calling NYC teachers because that doesn't appear to me where Trump needs to be defeated. I don't envision Trump taking the NYC teacher vote so easily, particularly since he had Junior lay into us for no good reason. If Hillary needs us badly enough she needs our help to take NY, things are dire indeed.
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