I’m taking some time off for three reasons: one, I need to recuperate from the intensity of the Dad’s 45’s series; two, I need to reset my body clock after staying up ’til the wee hours watching the baseball playoffs; and three, I’m completely obsessed with the presidential election in the United States.
My life depends on the outcome! Seriously!
Let me start by telling you that this is the first time I’ve ever voted. I loathe politics and find any political system the height of absurdity.
In my defense, I grew up during a period when the available presidential candidates did little to inspire me to get my ass into the voting booth. I came of age when it was time to choose between Bush, Gore or Nader, the dullest trio imaginable. In 2004, though Bush had already proven himself to be a disaster, I didn’t see the arrogant patrician John Kerry making things any better, and his pretty boy running mate gave me the creeps. Unlike my parents, I was never that impressed with Obama or his highfalutin’ words that rarely translated into tangible results. Nice guy, love his wife, sorry for the bullshit the Republicans have put him through—but I didn’t see the there there. And with alternatives like Sarah White Trash and Mitt the Stiff on the ballot, I was wise to spend my time on other priorities.
The man who finally inspired me to exercise my birthright as an American citizen was none other than Donald J. Trump, who triggered my entirely selfish motivations for voting while managing to offend every bone in my body by trampling on some of my most fervent beliefs.
With my dual citizenship, I can live and work in either the E.U. or the U. S. A. I have emphatically chosen to live in France primarily because of the American obsession with guns and violence. I don’t know how it is possible for a society to fail to pass a single gun control law after an incident like Sandy Hook, but the non-response to that horrible tragedy told me it was time to get the fuck out of that loony country.
This election won’t change any of that. If she’s lucky, Hillary may get the obvious keep-the-guns-out-of-the-hands-of-terrorists law passed, but I don’t expect much more than that. I want Hillary to win because she is everything Donald Trump is not: intelligent, practical, balanced and safe.
Donald Trump is frightening in many ways, from his complete ignorance of foreign policy to his adolescent dick-waving sexism. But the primary reason I fear his election is the simple truth that he and his followers hate people like me. My life partner is female, and though I have sex with women and men, the average American would classify me as a queer. There would be no place in Trump’s America for an educated, reasonably intelligent, atheistic woman who believes firmly in a woman’s right to own her body and likes to swing both ways. Trump and his gun-loving followers have repeatedly shown a taste for violence, and it’s not difficult to imagine that a Trump presidency would make persecuting and beating up queers perfectly acceptable behavior.
I’d be terrified to live in such a place, but I’d be even more afraid if I were black, Hispanic, Jewish or Muslim. A Trump presidency would legitimize sexism, racism and religious intolerance, giving license to public expressions of hatred and vigilante justice. Yesterday’s burning of a church in Mississippi is a snapshot of the sick society that would thrive under Trump.
Trump’s election would represent a complete rejection of fundamental human rights and an emphatic endorsement of bullying as the means of getting things done, whether it’s kicking out immigrants or conducting foreign policy. If Trump gets elected, my chances of ever returning to the United States are zero. Shit, I wouldn’t even visit the fucking place. I would renounce my American citizenship on November 9 and never look back. That’s not sour grapes like Trump refusing to respect the result if he loses—that’s complete acceptance of a horrifying result and all that it means.
Say what you will about Hillary, but she’s unlikely to implement any policy that reeks of prejudice. People complain that she’s not very exciting or inspiring, but I like that about her. I’d much rather have a pragmatist who gets things done than an idealist who’s incapable of dealing with reality. Hillary is introverted and so protective of her family that she comes across as a mama bear, so it’s hard to picture myself having a beer with her and enjoying the conversation. But while I may not want to hang out with Hillary, at least she understands how the game is played and is unlikely to do anything stupid. And best of all, she will be in a position to place intelligent jurists on the Supreme Court who will agree that a woman’s body is not the business of the government and that corporations—one of the most inhumane creations of humanity—are not people. Although I don’t anticipate major transformation, Hillary will protect a woman’s right to choose, uphold human rights and push to get the one-percenters to pay something closer to their fair share.
As far as the scandals are concerned, all I can say is “oh, for fuck’s sake.” The email scandal can be summed up in a few words: many Baby Boomers are technological morons. Careless with classified information? Better fire everyone in the NSA then. Benghazi? Shit, the Republican Majority Leader confessed that the investigations were politically motivated. Hillary doesn’t handle these things particularly well because a.) she’s an introvert, b.) she has no patience for stupidity and c.) she’s spent most of her adult life getting the crap kicked out of her by the right-wing.
Look. I may never go back to the States. And though I was thrilled to see a real-life socialist get millions of votes in the primaries, I know the U. S. A. is a long way from getting over its obsessions with money and guns, and has a long way to go in matters of race, gender and sexual orientation. But though I may never go back, I still want to have the option available. There are many things I miss about the States and if circumstances lead me to conclude that America is the place where I can best manifest my potential, I don’t want that opportunity stolen from me by a racist, sexist moron and his more-than-deplorable followers.
While Hillary Clinton will not bring about my dream society run by leather-clad women where everybody spends all their time fucking instead of making wars, the alternative is to give a man with the intelligence of an early Neanderthal the keys to the nuclear arsenal. This choice should be a no-brainer, but if there’s one defining quality that defines Trump and his followers, it’s that they have no brains.
So fuck yes, I’m with her!