Why Voting for Trump in 2020 is Immoral, an Essay

As a rule, I try to avoid writing about politics online because it’s a warzone and because, due to the plethora of bots and alt-accounts, it’s not always possible to tell if you’re debating with a real person or wasting your energy on a program. However, it has gotten to a point where I feel like the discourse on public events are only operating under a veneer of politics to justify unsupportable opposing views on core democratic issues that are decidedly not policy-related. The long and short of it is that there aren’t two sides to everything and, in my opinion, there aren’t two sides to the 2020 election. There is no excuse, moral or otherwise, to vote for Trump at this point.

Why? Well — as expressed more fully below — it’s because Trump is actively trying to dismantle democracy for his own benefit — especially at the expense of minorities and women — in order to make himself money and to protect the advantages of his white base, which conveniently benefits him as well.

If this “opinion” offends you and you don’t care to see the many facts supporting this statement and instead want to live in a world where the last four years didn’t happen, stop here and don’t read on. However, if you’re willing to learn, everything I write below is factual, cited, and is coming from a place where I deeply care about what happens to this country.

Trump is many objectionable things, and nobody can reasonably justify his presence in office with the initial excuse that propelled him there. The promise that maybe he’s just smart and he’ll do good work despite his bluntness and surround himself with good people is no longer an operable premise. It has been four years and none of this happened.

Instead, the overarching issue has transcended politics and policy, and the issue has become one of foundational importance. This is the issue: Trump seems to be an authoritarian held back only —and barely — by the process he is actively trying to dismantle. He is trying to claw his way into a power the system is specifically designed to prevent. He is intentionally baiting you into distrusting the process so that you will believe his reasons for staying in power if he loses.

For instance, he has undermined mail-in voting with disproven conspiracy theories and consistently rails against in-person voter fraud as well. There is no evidence for such fraud. Let me repeat that. He doesn’t want you to trust either method of voting and he is already accusing the Democrats of “stealing the election” before it even happens. The Administration even spent taxpayer dollars asking a Judge to deny mail-in ballots to 50,000 Iowans (a swing state) simply because their information had already been filled out and they just needed to sign it and return it. The Judge complied.

Trump literally wants to make it harder for you to vote and is willing to wield the judiciary to do so, but he doesn’t want you to trust that same judiciary when he doesn’t like what it has to say.

He has even gone so far as to say that the only way he’s losing is if the election is rigged by the Left. He is planting the seeds to stay in power if he loses, and people are eating it up. He’s telling you not to trust the results now so that if he loses he looks like a prophet who told you it was coming.

He then accuses anyone who disagrees with him of being in a “deep-state”, he consistently fires people who try to hold him accountable, and he discredits anyone investigating his allies.

I mean…come on. He used tear gas on a crowd of protestors simply to get a photo-shoot in front of a church for his religious base. Do we really think he wouldn’t put even more effort into staying in power and quashing dissent?

I also find it odd how comfortable people are with the fact that a large number of people intimately connected to his campaign have been convicted for actions directly related to his personal campaign.

Trump also has a litany of lawsuits against him. Staying in power means he doesn’t have to deal with them. Sounds like motive to me.

On a more basic level, Trump is also greedy, and the presidency is — and always will be — a cash cow and a power grab to him. More motive.

For example, he has funneled over $1 Million dollars to his hotels. He has funneled over $300 Million dollars of tax payer money into his golf courses via trips during his presidency. He also never gave up his business, despite promising that he would, he merely stepped down and put it in a trust which he gets back after his presidency.

On top of all this, he has waged a campaign against the press for pointing this stuff out, impugning them, discrediting them, and then making dossiers on reporters who write about it.

This is not a man who loves freedom. This is a man who loves power and is willing to gaslight anyone who opposes him. He is an authoritarian in the making.

As if this weren’t bad enough, Trump is also racist, as much as he opines to the contrary. This means that non-white people are, to him, a scape goat he can use to further the agenda described above.

For example, in the wake of the recent — and not-so-recent —violence against African-Americans by police, instead of listening to Black voices, he defended the officers, comparing a police officer’s violence against a Black man to choking on a putt. Choking on a putt. A man is paralyzed because he got shot in the back seven times in front of his kids and it’s nothing more than a poor golf play to him.

Before that, he gave a platform to the rich white people who pulled guns on protestors and said nothing of the white kid who shot at and killed 2 protestors while pretending to be a medic. He did grant an African-American woman a pardon recently, but only after she gave a speech praising him. The day before. There is no evidence it was a quid-pro-quo, but the proximity of the events is suspicious.

He has also declined to condemn violent, deadly counter-protestors, instead blaming it on the media and has said, in the midst of a national crisis of police brutality against minorities, that he will send police to the polls, knowing full well that a police presence at the polls will be prohibitive to minority voters. This is bad enough, but he has also admitted in the past that he has benefitted from Black people not voting. It looks an awful lot like targeted, racial voter suppression, folks.

As I stated before, his racism means his authoritarian goals will be at the expense of minorities. It certainly seems like this is already happening.

I mean, factually speaking, Black people are disproportionately killed by police. Black people also receive over 20% longer sentences for the same crimes. These are hard facts, and yet Trump still maintains that it is a “Leftist” problem, while remaining silent about the fact that the number of Right-Wing “Militia”, like the kid who shot the protestors in Kenosha, grew ten-fold after Obama (the first Black president) was inaugurated and that they are growing increasingly emboldened and violent under his leadership.

He also continues to give fuel to birther claims exclusively for non-white presidents or vice-presidents, he has undermined judges for being Mexican, and, among other things, he paid for a newspaper ad just to say that he wanted the Central Park 5 to be afraid and to feel his anger.

As if being a racist wanna-be authoritarian wasn’t bad enough, Trump is also sexist. Don’t believe me? Just look at a small sampling of how Trump has consistently made derogatory comments about women, including calling a lawyer “disgusting” for wanting to go pump breastmilk, undermining a reporter by alleging she was having her period, and taunting a Republican primary opponent with the following: “Look at that face! Would anyone vote for that?”

He has also said that it’s “the wife’s job” to change diapers, made light of sexual assault claims, and was so belittling to a female reporter that she had to be escorted out of a rally because of how his words agitated and egged on his supporters.

Trump is quite literally that senile relative who spouts racism and sexism at your local McDonald’s over their senior discount coffee. Except…we write off Grandpa Paul as a “product of a different age” but…Trump is the President. Our standards should be higher for a Commander-in-Chief, especially one who seems so intent on disarming checks and balances. The President should be a leader. A good leader doesn’t undermine and belittle those under them, they seek to empower. When everyone else is empowered, we are empowered the more for it. Trump only wants to empower himself.

Listen, at the end of the day, vote for who you want. It’s America after all. Just please own up to that fact that if you are voting for Trump, you know exactly what you are getting. He’s power-hungry, and because he is also racist and sexist, minorities and women will be sacrificed on his journey for such power more than everyone else. If you are a white male, you cannot just vote for what directly benefits you. It has to be more than that.

In other words, don’t blindly vote Republican because it’s what benefits you. Look at what’s actually happening and ask yourself if it’s right, not just if it’s Red. It isn’t about politics anymore. It’s about making sure we don’t elect an autocrat simply because we can’t see past one issue.

And that, folks, is the tea.

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Stephen Joseph

Stephen Joseph

Poetry and Pop Culture is the name of the game. Stephen is an author living in Rochester with his wife and two children.