mary_j_59: (mug)
[personal profile] mary_j_59
Like millions of my fellow citizens, I am going to vote in a couple of days. A priest in a church I visited said a couple of very wise things about the election. He said:
1. There is no candidate who truly represents Catholic social teaching and/or the morality of the peoples of the book.
2. Our fellow citizens, whomever they support, are not the enemy. They are our countrymen and women, and our brothers and sisters.

I think it's very important to remember both these things, but I'm going to focus here on the first. As much as they may seem to differ on the surface, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump have some core similarities. Both are servants of Empire and its wars. In this way, both are strongly opposed to the way I see the world.

I don't think it's possible for me to say anything about the Donald that hasn't already been said. He's simply appalling. The way he's whipping up racist, anti-immigrant, anti-democratic feelings is truly frightening, and I'm simply incredulous that the man has gotten as far as he has.

Hillary Clinton is a neoliberal, closely allied with the neocons. I can well understand voters who will hold their noses and vote for her. I can even understand my fellow women cheering her on. But-

Like Trump, she is a millionaire, and is beholden to wealthy corporations. Like him, she advocates violence. She is friendly with Netanyahu, who is, I believe, a war criminal. She is arguably a war criminal herself for what she has done to Libya, Syria, and Honduras. She supports the TPP, or did until Bernie Sanders urged her not to and she realized how unpopular it was with the electorate. She supports fracking. For what she did as Secretary of State, I highly recommend Diana Johnstone's Queen of Chaos. This book doesn't pretend to be objective, which some readers have rightly pointed out is a weakness. But it is thorough and clear, and it presents a point of view you won't often get from our mainstream media.

But Hillary's still the lesser of two evils, right? Well-possibly. I think she may actually be more likely than Trump to get us into a prolonged quagmire in the Middle East (not that we aren't already in one) or, God forbid, even a proxy war with Russia. Domestically, I believe she has supported austerity programs, and, as I said before, she does support fracking. She has had nothing at all to say on the brave battle of the Lakota people to preserve their water and their sacred lands at Standing Rock.

Many women support her because she supports abortion. That's a difficult issue, and I don't want to go into it here at any length. Whether or not the child in the womb is fully a person, and when the child achieves personhood, is a matter of spiritual belief. It's wrong to trample on others' beliefs, but it's also wrong, in a pluralistic democracy, to impose one's beliefs on others. It's probably best not to say more than this for now.

Getting back to my main point, to a greater or lesser degree, both the major candidates are tools of the military industrial complex. Both are servants of empire. I object to both of them on these grounds. I will, of course, vote. I'd be remiss not to. But it's absolutely true that neither one of these people represents my values. If you have to choose between these two candidates, it won't be an easy choice.

I would like to add that there are other choices.
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