Lesser of Two Evils

“Of two evils, choose neither.”  Charles Spurgeon

In this year’s U.S. presidential election there is a first, the candidates put forward by the two major political parties have disapproval ratings above 50%. No matter which of these candidates gets elected over half of the country will be dissatisfied, AMAZING! Disapproval ratings means the people who are actively opposed to the candidate, one can approve one candidate without disapproving of the other. (As an aside, if I was in charge of either of these parties I would lose the ballot results and nominate someone from the floor.) I do not want to dwell on the issue of American politics I am not qualified to fix the problems in that arena.

Rather, what has me completely perplexed and angered is the lie that is being circulated that there are only three options, vote Clinton, vote Trump, or don’t vote. This lie is compounded by the pragmatic claim that “not voting is a vote for x” (x being whichever candidate you hate more). We are conning people into giving up their values and silencing their consciences on the misplaced idea that voting for the lesser of two evils is voting for good. Now I am not saying that either candidate is evil; nor, am I saying that honest, moral people cannot favor a candidate. What I am saying is that to back someone into a corner saying these candidates are their only options, is unethical.

To the person who cannot support either major candidate, I say find a third party candidate or write in a name. Vote your conscience, not someone else’s.

Some equate voting for outsiders with throwing your vote away, because “you are letting the other side win.” However, if I am voting for someone other than your candidate I’m not on your side on this issue to begin with. If a person votes for a third party or write’s in a name that individual is taking a standing against both Republicans and Democrats, saying that regardless of who I normally side with today I am not with either. Such a vote casts a pall on the entire political system saying, that such an individual, stands against the system that allowed these two candidates to be nominated.

A great deal of time and effort has been wasted on trying to persuade people that one candidate is the lesser of two evils. However, that is not the way we should conduct ourselves.

I feel a strong desire to tell you- and I expect you to feel a strong desire to tell me- which of these two errors is the worse. That is the devil getting at us. He always sends errors into the world in pairs- pairs of opposites. And he always encourages us to spend a lot of time thinking about which is the worse. You see why, of course? He relies on your extra dislike of the one error to draw you gradually into the opposite one. But do not let us be fooled. We have to keep our eyes on the goal and go straight through between both errors. We have no other concern than that with either of them. C.S. Lewis Mere Christianity

The lesser evil is still evil and should, must be resisted. Voting is a right and comes with the responsibility to vote according to conscience, not according to whether a candidate has a “d” or “r” next to her or his name.

Again you might believe that Donald Trump is a great man and/or Hillary Clinton is a great woman and that one is supremely qualified to be America’s next president. This post is about those individuals who feel pressure to vote for one of these individuals when they believe in neither. We are call to live ethical lives, lives governed by morality and if that means that you protest both candidates and vote for someone right to hold the office, so be it. You will not be participating in the downfall of America by letting the letting the lesser of two evils win, you will be holding to convictions. Let people know your intentions to vote contrary to the masses, perhaps you can be the catalyst toward presidential candidates who are not above 50% disapproval.

 

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