I can’t remember anguishing over whom to vote for this much since I was 10. In 1960 (even though I was too young to actually vote), I wanted Nixon to win. My 12-year-old sister wanted JFK, and she tried to persuade me to support Kennedy even if I really preferred Nixon, based on her theory that whoever was elected would be assassinated (according to past statistical records, which did prove to be true 3 years later). I stuck to my guns, though, and was sadly disappointed.
This election, the only candidate whose personal life made me trust him was Ben Carson, and the thought of Donald Trump was almost humiliating. I definitely did not have a high opinion of Donald Trump, and I didn’t want our country turning into a laughable reality T.V. show! However, last night I listened to Trump’s acceptance speech at the Republican National Convention, and I realized that (his past history aside) I actually agreed with most of his platform. Obama’s care of our nation will end with his nearly doubling our national debt from 10.6 trillion when he entered office to over 19 trillion today, and heading to upwards of 20 trillion before he’s out of office. I strongly want a conservative Supreme Court who will protect our constitutional rights. I believe in protecting freedom of speech and allowing religious institutions to retain their tax-exempt status. I believe in the right to bear arms, and the importance of upholding the immigration laws that are on the books. I do want protection from terrorists and fair trade agreements. I do want to support Israel and their right to have a tiny bit of earth where they can live without being persecuted. I don’t want illegal immigrants taking jobs from legal immigrants (because they’re willing to work for less and don’t pay taxes). It wasn’t socialism that made our country great and allowed for a healthy middle class; it was capitalism. What we need is the opportunity for people to be able to work hard and succeed, not to have all their needs met whether or not they’re willing to work. “For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat” (2 Thessalonians 3:10, notice the verse says “would not,” not “could not.” The Bible always admonishes us to be kind to those who are truly needy.) I do want someone whose intention is to put the needs of the American people first and to protect our nation. Isn’t that what a good leader is supposed to do? Think of God’s injunctions from the scripture: “As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith” (Galatians 6:10). “But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel” (1 Timothy 5:8). I’m glad Alan is a compassionate physician and a generous donor, but I’m also glad he puts the needs of his children ahead of the unending neediness of the world of mentally ill folks he serves. I think if people who believe in the Republican platform don’t want to vote for Donald Trump, it’s because they don’t trust him…but hasn’t Hillary Clinton broken trust with the American people even more? Trump didn’t sound like an irrational lunatic to me last night; he sounded like someone espousing many of the views I also believe. YES, we need reform, but NO, we don’t need a continued slide into unprecedented debt and a re-formed constitution. I wish we had democratic and republican candidates with more honorable records, but that’s not going to keep me from voting for the candidate whose platform is best aligned with the values I believe in, and I hope—despite how much our political opinions may differ—that will also be true for you.
“To do justice and judgment is more acceptable to the LORD than sacrifice.” (Proverbs 21:3)