I voted protested.
This is in response to those who, disappointed with the presidential election results, are either protesting in the streets or packing bags to move to another country. To those peoples I say, stop what you are doing, for such actions reveals how you regard democratic ideals—the ideals which the U.S. has attempted to “export” to the countries to which you flee.
In full disclosure, I did not, repeat DID NOT, vote for Donald Trump. My candidate lost. I knew my candidate would lose, for I voted for a third-party candidate of which most people never heard. Indeed, the party I voted for was so small and obscure, I had to write it in (although my state supposedly tallied those votes as if it were listed).
It has been said that, in voting third party as a conservative, I virtually voted for Hillary Clinton. Supposing this is true, well then my selection lost twice. It was also said that my vote was wasted and thrown away. But I voted the way I voted, not just to deny the major party candidates, but to protest the media’s election-shaping from beginning to end, first elevating Trump to the nomination with jillions of dollars of free exposure and elevating Clinton to the nomination with judicious reporting (and CNN cheating via Donna Brazille). The presidential debates further shaped the binary choice with irrelevant questions designed to highlight each candidate’s lack of morality—hey, tell me something new. I see reason that the same air time could have been used to include third party candidate’s responses on issues that would affect me if they enter office. But the media had decided that TWO is the number of the counting and the number of the counting shall be TWO!
But now the strange reality: Donald Trump is president elect. If protestors protest that fact, who or what could change it? That the presidency should be simply handed over to Clinton? Why not the party I voted for who also lost?
We have an election every four years to register our protest—our revolt. The nation protested the establishment in a huge way; the nation protested the usual politics and politicians. The nation protested at the ballot box, for better or for worse. If one believes using some sort of force to remove Donald Trump from power, you are basically saying you want to change our Constitution and our form of government. Do you really? Do you want to disenfranchise a segment of the population? Shall we go back to 1 acre = 1 vote? How about white, male, landowners? If you are protesting in the street or flying off to Canada, can you say you believe in democracy? Yes, I think we should only allow people the right to vote but only if they agree with my politics. Sound good?
The bottom line: democracy requires that 1) I participate by voting 2) I accept the results. Agreed that the first one assumes one is making an informed choice but the media has made that difficult to do. The second is more unilateral. If I were to protest anything it would be the vetting we use to arrive at the candidates we get from which the president is elected. But as it stands, we must accept the results or renounce our Constitution altogether. Personally, I was fully prepared to accept a Clinton presidency—indeed it seemed like a foregone conclusion. But now it is a Trump presidency and the only proper thing to do is to accept that fact, get behind him, and move on.