You stand for bigotry, Republican Leadership

You stand for bigotry. There are only six days left till the election to stand against it. Six days for you to stand up and be leaders. Yes, it’s silly for me to expect or care that you will. Yet I do. Trump is a symptom. He’s not the disease. He may be incompetent, crude and bigoted. But most everything he’s said is something that your colleagues have said, perhaps in coded terms, for quite some time. Rejecting Trump is not about Trump losing. Rejecting Trump is about you starting to guide people away from electoral politics based on bigotry before it really does go too far, if it hasn’t already.

St. Louis Arch from the bottom

St. Louis Arch

I know I’m shouting into the void saying this. It’s not like hundreds if not thousands of folks with more influence than me haven’t been telling you — Paul Ryan, Mitch McConnell, John McCain, and many others, as well the clown car of competitors in the primaries — that it is moral bankruptcy to support Trump as the leader of the party. I imagine John Kasich has talked to you all personally. But I actually believe most of you are relatively competent, well-intentioned people. I think you’re actually a lot like me and other people I know and trying to do your best.

But I really need more of you to find some guts. You are half the political leadership in this country. How do I feel when nearly half of the most influential people in my society support a man who admits to sexual assault and at least twelve women say he assaulted them? How do I feel when you support a man who demonizes nationalities, saying their immigrants are mostly rapists and murderers? Who openly has a policy of genocide against a minority — for that is what expelling Muslims or immigrants is? Whose political events has speakers physically threatening political opponents? Who is openly racist towards black people on the debate stage?

He’s pretty likely to lose at this point. But I don’t feel comfortable or safe. How can I when you, the most powerful people, can’t even reject an obviously incompetent and bigoted bully? You can’t even reject him when he’s likely to lose. What if the next fascist politician has a cleaner personal history but has all the same bigoted policies? Slavery of black people, genocide of natives and the internment of the Japanese aren’t acts we want to repeat. We still haven’t figured out how to make right for those. We shouldn’t add another huge sin.

Or maybe you do want a genocide. Maybe Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell and the rest of you really do secretly think women are inferior, that Muslims shouldn’t be allowed in the country, that anyone who isn’t Christian or white is a second-class citizen and should expect violence at any time, more than they already do anyway. Maybe Trump really does represent your party. How can I tell that he doesn’t when so few of you who literally run the party won’t reject him? I don’t want to believe you stand for that. I want to believe most of you stand for country before party.

A large stone cross

You have six days to reject Trump. You don’t get to say after the election that “I didn’t support him” unless you can say before the election “you should not vote for Trump”. I don’t care if you personally already voted for Trump. I’ll take a public statement that you regret your vote and no one else should. You have six days or I will assume you support everything Trump stands for.

I know this post probably won’t be heard by who I’m addressing. But I hope others will read it and remember and not make excuses for them. When a politician who didn’t reject Trump says something about Clinton or Democratic policies, we should always first point out they support sexual assault, expulsion of immigrants, and every last awful thing Donald Trump has said, done or said he wants to do. Who cares what they think of anything while they support all of that? Let’s not forget after November 8th what they did and did not stand for.

They stood for naked bigotry.