Dear Bernie Bros:
I write this because I recently had a few verbal altercations with ‘Bernie or Bust’ supporters. In all these instances the Bernie supporter was a white man. In all of them the person vehemently supported Bernie Sanders with points that could easily be used to support Strom Thurmand’s overly long stay in the Senate (i.e. that Bernie must be good simply because Vermont continues to elect him). After extolling Bernie’s personal record, in response to my question of, “why don’t you do what Bernie Sanders asks then and vote for Hillary Clinton?” the theme was that Bernie Sanders was never about an individual but, rather, a set of ideals. Most disturbing, in all of these instances the Bernie supporter was uncannily misogynistic. In one instance even going as far to claim that, and I quote, “gay men are much like women in that they are overly emotional.” Sounds a bit like Trump, eh? It’s similar to the complaints from this crowd that Hillary Clinton is “power hungry” (as if that isn’t true of all Presidential candidates) or “shrill” as if that isn’t clearly sexist.
Now, I have greatly enjoyed Bernie Sanders’s run. The ideals and philosophies that came out of his mouth were refreshing, reassuring and enlightened. In fact, I think the country owes a debt of gratitude to Mr. Sanders for changing the discussion. For pushing the needle just a bit more left. As a Jew I was ecstatic to see a Jewish person actually win a primary in this country. It was wonderful. But, regardless, Mr. Sanders lost the Democratic Nomination by a significantly wide margin (as far as primaries go). And, at this point, you have to re-evaluate the situation and choose from your available options. You cannot merely demand Mr. Pibb for my beverage knowing that NYC diners do not carry Mr. Pibb. It’s about being on the right side of history. You won’t want to look back after three years of a Trump Presidency and feel like you had a hand in electing him.
Now let’s address this third party candidate situation. Sure, in 1860 Lincoln faced a divided Democratic Party as well as the Constitutional Union Party and a few others. That election, and many before it, were wrought with multiple political parties and candidates. But this is no longer a reality in America: even third-party candidates are not a viable option anymore. Every American citizen must face the harsh reality that the next President of the Unites States of America will be, absent some act of God, either the nominee put forth by the Republican National Convention of the candidate nominated by the Democratic National Convention. Gone are the days of multiple parties. No party, other than the Democratic or Republican Party, has garnered the necessary 5% of the vote to receive public campaign funding since the Pat Buchanan ran as the Reform Party candidate. Remember that scary guy!?
The Green Party candidate, Dr. Jill Stein, with her incredibly questionable remarks about vaccinations, is simply no longer an option to even crack the 5% mark. She’s also very much not in-line with the Bernie platform. The best third-party option is the man on the ballot in all 50 states, Gary Johnson of the Libertarian ticket (the guy that called Trump a Pussy!). Yet, Bernie Sanders shares the most in common with Mrs. Clinton. If you really want Bernie to be able to affect change then you must have Hillary Clinton in the White House. The point is, revolution isn’t a pragmatic choice. America was founded on the idea of slow, incremental change and that’s what works. A protest vote does nothing to effectuate actual, substantive change.
Thus, we citizens are faced with a decision. Hillary Rodham Clinton, former Senator, former Secretary of State, former first lady, accomplished attorney and lifelong advocate for the downtrodden and middle class as well as a career politician. On the other hand we have Donald John Trump. A lifelong billionaire, con-artist, accused rapist, incest advocate, bigot, fear monger, misogynist and generally not a ‘Presidential’ type of guy. The choice is simple: To have Donald Trump in the White House would be a disaster. We’re talking about the guy that equated bedroom etiquette with Presidential abilities saying, “If Hillary couldn’t satisfy her husband what makes her think she can satisfy America?” It would not only be embarrassing but it would hearken back to the days of Andrew Jackson when Presidents didn’t believe there were any checks on their power. It would bring to office someone not afraid to use the military to enforce their harsh agenda on both foreign and domestic policies.
The consequences are beyond dire. To refuse to act, because of your own self-interested principles is the political equivalent of “taking your ball and going home.” It’s the ultimate behavior of a brat. And you know who behaves that way? Donald Fucking Trump.
It is with a sincere sense of duty that I urge all of you to get out there and make sure that we send a message: America does not succumb to bigotry, racism, xenophobia and hatred of our gay, transgender, bi-sexual brothers and sisters.
You may think that Hillary Rodham Clinton is evil (although I would disagree – she’s more like a four course meal at a Michelin-starred restaurant but people don’t want to eat there because the chef is a woman), but it is undeniable that she is, by a wide margin, the most responsible choice for the Presidency in 2016.
Please do the right thing and vote!