What You Need to Believe

I want to take a very brief moment to make a very important point. Because there are some very serious people in very serious positions that are making a very public declaration that I feel is extremely harmful. I heard as recently as this morning, from someone I respect, the following:

Donald Trump, after at least 50 years of despicable behavior and after being caught on tape bragging about how he can do anything he wants to a woman, up to and including “grab her pussy” because he’s a star, is the most appropriate option available for the highest office of the most powerful nation the world has ever seen.

It’s probably appropriate to point out, that it should be the least surprising thing in the world that a man who behaves worse publicly than anyone I’ve ever seen would also behave worse than anyone I’ve ever seen when he thought only Billy Bush was looking.

But I digress. I said I wanted to make a very quick point. Because it’s important that we get on the same page here. We’ve got a few weeks left. So here it is:  By now, after all we’ve seen from Donald Trump, in order to believe he is the most suitable candidate for president, you would also have to believe the following, with a level of certainty that only can come with seeing it or hearing it yourself personally (perhaps hearing it said to Billy Bush on a leaked tape):

-Hillary Clinton was not simply negligent, but willfully so, in her conduct as Secretary of State during the time and events that lead to the death of Ambassador Stevens in Benghazi. You are certain of this (certain like you heard her saying it on a leaked tape to Billy Bush). And though one of the longest congressional inquiries ever held investigating the incident showed nothing more than instances of poor judgment by multiple levels of government and defense, the Republican led congress either failed to do their due diligence or is in fact secretly supporting Hillary Clinton.

-You also need to believe that former Chairman of the Joint Chief’s of Staff and Republican Secretary of State Colin Powell, who said in a private email that he felt like Clinton got a “bad rap” has no idea what he’s talking about. And that you have a firmer handle on the role, appropriate conduct and reasonable expectations of outcomes for the Secretary of State of the United States. You may also need to believe that Michael Bay makes movies worth watching not named “Transformers”.

-Hillary Clinton has clear, certain knowledge (certain like she heard him caught on tape saying it to Billy Bush) of the 42nd President of the United States sexually assaulting women. Moreover, armed with that knowledge, she has taken no action to prevent future or seek justice for past acts.

-Hillary Clinton’s use of a private server was intentionally done to harm the United States of America or promote personal gain on a criminal level, and though a six month investigation was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigations and no criminal charges have been brought against her, you either know better than the FBI or you are certain (certain like the director got caught saying it on tape to Billy Bush) they are either corrupt or complicit.

-You are not just pro-life. But additionally, you view abortion to be murder. And electing Donald Trump will enable an immediate or near term change in the Supreme Court ruling of Roe -V- Wade and therefore voting for someone else is actually not just endorsing, but enabling murder. The ability to actually affect change here matters. Because if he can’t change it himself, then this issue is actually not really in play and ceases to meet the criteria for belief stated above.

-Public defenders that defend criminals as a critical function of our system of justice actually are in favor of those criminal activities. And accepting to defend people who cannot stand trial without representation is an endorsement of their behavior and character.

-You believe that there is proof that Hillary Clinton, while Secretary of State, was criminally trading U.S. interests for donations to the Clinton foundation. And though the author of the book Clinton Cash, Peter Schweizer, has gone on the record saying there is no proof that it happened, you are certain (certain like you heard her say she did it to Billy Bush on a leaked tape) that you know more.

There may be more. I might not have gotten all of them.  And you don’t have to believe all of them. Believing any one of these might be enough to start, but not finish, the following debate:

Someone who we know with 100% certainty is guilty of the behavior highlighted above is more or less suitable to be president than someone we know with 100% certainty brags to people that he barely knows that he is allowed to sexually assault women because he’s a “star”.

If you believe these things, I really can’t argue with you. Because you either have information that the global media community hasn’t gotten their hands on. Or because you don’t really believe it, you just can’t get past the politics. And since the rest of us know that the first one probably isn’t true, then the second one is. You don’t believe it with certainty (certain like you heard it on a leaked tape to Billy Bush). You may just be a die hard conservative. Which I applaud because we need those. We really do. And I want to help you. Because when the rest of us hear you say these things, all we really hear is that grabbing women’s genitals because you’re famous is OK. What we really hear is that sexual assault is not that big a deal.

Consider this a public service message. For your own good, just go quietly into the night on this one, without a fight. You might maintain your strength in Congress. Which is good, because conservative ideology is important. But you have to stop. Because it won’t end well. In fact, for many, it already hasn’t. Consider the following from Mark Cuban:


That may be a bit heavy handed. And it’s probably unfair to those just trying to work hard and make a living. But for those with a choice, it’s probably not. And for those with a vote, it’s probably not either. We’ve wandered into a territory we never have before in our political history. Which usually requires you to do something you’ve never done before. It’s this: Put down the political looking glass and see this for what it is. Stop the false equivalency comparisons. This is a rare time when the burden of proof has been met to make this a clear binary decision. It’s not enough to condemn the words. Condemn the man. Condemn his goals. Condemn his participation in the future of our country.

Or condone the actions they represent.