I am an independent. I think it's every person's right to be idealistic and hold out for a better world, even if it means rejecting the "old" one. I'm proud of my daughter for being that way.
My generation started the attitude as it now persists. We said politics is rigged, the system is warped, and all politicians are wicked. The Viet Nam war turned us into a gang of cynics by the age of nineteen.
Then, we watched the likes of Nixon elected, and G. W. Bush, and then to top it off, the piece de resistance, his re-election after taking the country to war under false pretenses. Those paying attention and not stuck in the past know what the electorate in this county is capable of.
We refused to lower ourselves to participate. We were one hell of a stubborn lot. Probably, the most stubborn in the country's history who operated under the banner or moral superiority and self-righteousness. We figured that by withholding ourselves from the two party system we'd bring it down. It may have been good enough at one time, but no more--not while we are around.
Some learned and some didn't; the purest stayed above it all, hardly tempted, even by Obama, the first black contender where that wasn't even imaginable when we started out. It mattered more to a new generation he was against the war, really intended to do something about health care, was brilliant, and had to fight each small step of the way. The dreamers came through and he proved to be a winner given the realty of politics, rather than the delusions of ideology. We know now he's one of our greatest presidents.
Now we're faced for the first time with a candidate not just lacking in scruples, not just a rabid opportunist, but totally unfit. He has been unfit from the day he incited the nation's racists by denying the citizenship of the president he wants to replace, and then maintaining that position after it was totally clear to everyone it was a lie. The rest is jibber-jabber. And yet that is apparently still not enough for the chronically self-righteous who still can't make up their minds and keep wishing for a world that doesn't exist, didn't exist, and won't ever exist.
They'll hold their breath and stomp their feet while those who idolize a conman turn the country down the path toward fascism. There has never been a more clear cut choice. I've taken my shot at a few of them--challenging them to make sense with reasonable arguments about the challenges of government vs. those of business, how there is little to expect from a businessman who is an embarrassment to the business community, and how if Washington is only thought of as an "enemy" there is no reasonable expectation that anyone can ever govern. But they avoid these issues as if they don't exist.
Politics has become an entertainment--a sporting event where you take sides and then root for your side to win. The cheerleaders have radio and television shows that cater to the lowest common denominator: fear and prejudice. Whether their hero will benefit them, or the nation is not a consideration that occurs to them. They want victory and blood--they are perpetual adolescents.
Hillary has offended their ethics. Her life in public service doesn't matter. The fact she presents realistic policies is of no consequence, or that as a politician in our form of democracy understands compromise. The incredible resilience she displayed surviving everything they threw at her and her husband from day one is not of concern, even if it is called character. Their perfect world is shattered by her emails. After all, that's what's on the front page. "They've got a good point there," they say, protecting their innocence from the cruelty of political reality.
Everybody else is supposed to be an adult, and consider the greater good, but to them it doesn't exist in the farthest reaches of their imagination. They want to know things like why are the deductibles so high on "Obamacare," and anybody else should be allowed into the country no matter how much they have been forced to suffer--as they and their families once were. They're hypocrites whose souls have been sold, their minds made small by gross consumerism, and their perspective limited.
If Trump wasn't unfit it might be a different matter. If he didn't threaten civil order and promise pretty much to throw the world into chaos with a shaky trigger finger and bellicose temperament it might not be the same thing, but that isn't the case. It is fully evident and has been for months his ego and personal ambition are his only guides. If he has ever done anything where his own gain wasn't at stake I haven't heard it yet, and wouldn't believe him if says he did. And what really makes that scary is it is totally unlikely to change if he is ever in office.
He has made this election primarily into a referendum on race. If Obama hadn't been black there wouldn't have been a T-Party, nor a Trump. His exploitation of the moral underbelly of this country is what has gotten him where he is. Some of them are ignorant, some of them are bitter over what they think they are entitled too, and some are just plain stupid--and won't be stopped until he is defeated.
It doesn't matter how despicable a person he's proven himself to be. But it does matter whether or not in the future we're to share the ideals and bounty of this nation or if a new era of strife is about to begin. If he's elected because "independents" still don't recognize the threat it will be my generation's greatest failure.