When it comes to voting, I had had enough a long time ago personally.
In my youth, I never saw a candidate I could feel comfortable within my conscience voting for. As I became an adult, and the responsibility
(ostensibly) of voting weighed on said conscience, I considered whether some small amount of compromise was at least reasonable for any semblance of
greater good. Yet even there I failed to find a candidate I could live with myself if I voted for them.
Decades later, and I still can't find one. To me, a vote is my placing my energy and support - however small and insignificant it may be - behind
someone. That means that whatever they do, I am in some tiny measure culpable for. When a president ends up in a scandal that reveals corruption,
willful deception, betrayal of the public trust, or the deaths of innocents, that's on me if I voted for them. I already feel guilt for other things
I'm indirectly responsible for, but have no choice about (what our tax dollars pay for - some things I agree with, others I don't - or just knowing
that living in a first world country I am in some indirect way probably responsible for the suffering or impoverishing of someone, somewhere.) But a
vote is a conscious choice. It's on me. I needed to know there was someone I could sleep at night having voted for them.
I at least wanted someone who would 1) uphold the constitution rather than curtailing it (which both parties do, just at different ends of the
spectrum imo,) 2) be reasonably likely to be less
willing to engage in actions, foreign policies, or conflicts which cost more innocent lives
caught in the middle than we can count at this point, 3) would lead with decorum and a genuine spirit of service rather than as a defender of their
"side" or in pursuit of a legacy attached to their name, 4) would uphold human and civil rights in all respects, and 5) would find a means of
stabilizing debt and the budget without also completely throwing the poor and/or women under the bus.
I would prefer a lot more than those, but those are my bare minimum standards. The only candidate I ever came close to voting for was Bernie Sanders.
Once his positions became clearer though, I withdrew my support for him as well.
I have no enmity toward any of our candidates. I don't take part in the schadenfreude-laden cheerleading that seems to dominate American politics. I
don't hate anyone, or their supporters. Quite the contrary. I simply need to be able to live with myself at the end of the day. There hasn't been a
candidate in my life time I would vote for. And that's assuming our votes actually matter... my opinion of which tends to oscillate. (After this last
primary season, that view is skewing negative again somewhat.)
edit on 9/14/2016 by AceWombat04 because: typo
edit on 9/14/2016 by AceWombat04 because: Double typo