President Obama has it exactly right when he admonishes his campaign rally audiences, “Don’t boo! Vote!” It is not enough to through verbal stones during this 2016 election. The American Republican Party has become one of the largest threats to democracy, as we know it and understand it, on the face of the planet today. How is it possible for Paul Ryan, Republican and Speaker of the House of Representatives, to vote for a candidate with whom he refuses to be seen on the same stage? Many in positions of Republican leadership cannot even bring themselves to mention the head of the Republican Party ticket by name. Yet, they insists on voting for this individual. This is surely the most blatant display of spineless political leadership I have seen since I have been old enough to follow politics. On the other side of the spectrum, there are House Republican Committee Chairs stating that they intend to begin impeachment proceedings against Hillary Clinton even though she has not been elected President. As we know and heard during the debates, Hillary’s opponent has threatened to put her in jail if he were to be elected President. This is not a type of public discourse that uplifts. It is only designed to sow disharmony.
Many pundits are talking about how negative the 2016 presidential race has become. Analysts bemoan the lack of serious policy discussions that have been generated by this election. There is only one candidate and one party to blame for these deplorable developments, Donald Trump and the Republican Party. Donald Trump began his campaign by disparaging Mexicans and Muslims. He is ending his campaign in the same hateful and demagogic way that it began. For the past few presidential election cycles, political observers have realized that the Republican Party primary has become a breeding ground for ultra-right wing politics and extremist positions on race, the status of women, and immigration. As a consequence, Donald Trump pandered extremely hard to this element of the Republican Party and emerged victorious in the primaries. The only Constitutional Amendment that Trump respects is the Second Amendment. There is even the call for armed poll watchers to gather in areas where large numbers of African Americans vote simply to watch their voting. This is nothing less than voter intimidation. In one state a judge issued an order of protection warning Trump supporters not to engage in such a practice. There is no one to blame for such voter tension than Donald Trump and his Republican backers.
In our time or era of presidential politics, we have known of detrimental decisions and policies that have been made on the part of Presidents. Have we known of such a destructive campaigner as Donald Trump? For example, President Obama won the Nobel Peace Prize during his first term in office in 2009. The Peace Prize was awarded to President Obama for just as much as how he conducted his presidential campaign in additional to what he accomplished in office. Obama had already set the tone of his administration long before he was sworn into office. Donald Trump has also set the tone of what a Trump administration would look like as well. Based on this perception, America’s allies are extremely worried. Russia is elated over the prospect of a Trump administration. Beyond this, we have not a clue as what form an African policy would take. Climate change would be relegated to the proverbial backburner. International right wing extremist groups would be emboldened by America’s jarring lurch to the extreme right. For certain, a Nobel Peace Prize would be nowhere in sight. Even the FBI has been tainted in this election.
Regardless, of what one thinks or knows about a potential Trump presidency, we do know that that dire prospect does not have to come to fruition if people would only come out to vote it down. A great deal of talk has been spoken regarding the lack of African American enthusiasm for Hillary Clinton. I argue that African Americans will vote for Hillary in very large numbers. We must be reminded that Hillary is not Barack. This is not meant racially. Barack was a superb orator. Hillary also admits this point. Nevertheless, Obama asked her to be his Secretary of State. Obama is campaigning vigorously for Hillary Clinton. Moreover, Hillary is not running away from Obama’s legacy. Deficits in the African American vote will be compensated with a higher White and Latino vote for Hillary Clinton. President Obama only received 38 percent of the White vote when he won the presidency. Women are also seen as a powerful force in this election. Aside from these realities, the reader of this article can be a powerful voice in this election as well. Yes, there is an extremely negative and apocalyptic aura which emanates from a Trump presidential bid. But as President Obama has so often admonished us, “Don’t boo! Vote!!”