A Breakup Letter to Moderate Conservatives
If you consider yourself a Moderate Conservative and you voted for Trump, I’m writing this letter to tell you that I’m breaking up with you.
Yes, admittedly, you and I haven’t always gotten along. We’ve had our fights. Our lover’s quarrels. But at the end of the day I did genuinely listen to you. I heard you. And I even agreed with you on a lot of things.
I lamented over Liberal political correctness with you.
I urged Liberals to be a little more understanding of Americans who didn’t live across the street from artisan coffee brewers and modern art museums.
I told Liberals to turn the volume down when they were out celebrating and congratulating Caitlyn Jenner on her “bravery” while our veterans were returning home with no legs back to cities with no jobs.
I calmed my Liberal friends down on the eve of 08’ and 12’ elections. I assured them that McCain and Romney were not in fact the Big Bad Wolf. That they were good men. Sensible Men. Ethical men. And that it would not be the end of the world if they were to be elected.
I told Liberals to shut up and stop whining over whether their gummy bears were organic or not.
I stood up when Liberal Universities got speakers banned because they might say something “controversial” that “hurt” peoples’ feelings.
I begged feminists not to demonize all men, as we needed them for the fight and that there were good men on your side.
I called out the Liberals who were outspoken about misogyny, homophobia, freedom of speech and backwards religious thinking, who then miraculously would go radio silent when any of those topics overlapped on to Islam.
I suggested to Liberals that they gain just a little perspective as they freaked out over what bathrooms grown men were allowed to pee in.
And I stood up for you whenever a far left friend labeled you all as racists, sexists, xenophobes, or bigots.
I say all this not to prove how charitable I was, but to show you how much I trusted in the slow progress of our democracy. How much I subscribed to the notion that real democracy was always fueled by the extremes and shaped by the middle.
I say this to prove how much I invested in the idea that we all belonged to the same tribe. The American tribe. And in that tribe, your success was my success. Your failures were my failures.
And mostly, I say all this so you understand how much I genuinely trusted you. How much I trusted that if the most moderate and sensible among us had your backs, that the most sensible among you would have ours when we needed it most. That when the situation was truly dire, you would step up to the plate and do your part.
But this election just showed me how little you actually care about this country.
This election showed me why I shouldn’t ever trust you again.
You just chose to put the most unqualified unfit candidate in the history of our republic behind the most powerful desk on earth.
I will rephrase that so you can grasp just how planet-swallowing the gravity of this situation is for all of us.
You just elected a racecar driver to fly the most difficult, most dangerous, heaviest, complex, airplane in the world with 1,027 megatons of nuclear weapons strapped to the bottom. A racecar driver that has never flown a plane before, let alone been inside a cockpit. A racecar driver that has never bothered reading a manual or instruction booklet on flying, who duped you all into believing not only that that wasn’t necessary, but in fact that his inexperience would somehow make him a better pilot.
This election has shown me how unpatriotic you really are. How easy it was for you to play Russian Roulette with our democracy.
That you would risk our institutions on this man. That mantle-piece upon which our entire free enterprise rests. All for a man who is convinced that everyone has conspired against him. Who entertained any conspiracy theory that garnered votes and yet showed zero ability to decipher what the individual responsibilities of these institutions were or how it is exactly that they operated.
That you would risk our Constitution on this man. The stitching that holds the fabric of our civil society together, that this was worth gambling all on a man who thinks freedom of speech and the press are far too open unless of course its Wikileaks and Russian hacks.
That you would risk the safety of our fellow countrymen on this man. That whatever this man was promising you was worth putting minorities and women and LBTQ in the crosshairs of the worst and most depraved among us.
How else should I interpret your actions if not racist, if not bigoted? What part of this man’s platform was so compelling to you so as to justify giving real racists and bigots in this country an even larger microphone, even more power?
I know you always tell me that you’re not racist. That you’re a good person. But you’re going to have to explain to me the grand philosophical difference between actually being a racist and casting a vote for one. The grand philosophical difference between actually being a racist candidate and just using racism to get yourself elected.
Think about telling your children or grandchildren that you voted for a man who was publicly endorsed by the KKK. Think about the mental gymnastics you will have to employ just to explain it in a way that doesn’t paint you as ignorant or selfish or racist, or all three.
Think about how that’s gonna read in their history books.
“…and in 2016 we elected a man who was endorsed by the KKK and whose chief strategic advisor was a white-nationalist and everything turned out great!”
When race riots and class warfare riots break out, when there is authentically compelled civil unrest rising up in our cities, explain to me what magic tweet this nuanced and measured leader will fire off at 3AM that will calm everyone down.
Or maybe it’s that you don’t actually think that these real racists and xenophobes and neo-fascists exist in our society. That there really aren’t vile and decrepit Americans, hiding out, just chomping at the bit, waiting for a president like Trump to come along so they don’t have to hide in the shadows anymore.
How wonderful of a reality that must be to live in. How useful that level of cognitive dissonance must be in helping you sleep at night.
And again I ask you, all for what?
Was it Isis? You’d figure it was smarter to trade out a 10-year-old foreign terrorist network for a 150-year-old domestic one? Or maybe you thought a man that has never made a military decision in his life and knows nothing of the geopolitical situation in the Middle East somehow would keep us safer than the one person who has been fighting at the front lines of this battle for the past 8 years.
Yes, of course I would love to hear our next president say the words “Radical Islamic Terrorism”. But what then? So he said Voldemort’s name out loud- congratulations! Now what’s the magical plan for defeating them that he mysteriously hasn’t felt compelled to share with anyone yet, and in the meantime managed to alienate all of the Muslim Americans who live here and feel as much love for this country as you or me.
Perhaps maybe you voted for him because of a tax break? I can understand that logic. But lay it out for me exactly how many dollars was it that you would need to save to make it worth trading out for a hate crime.
If Trump told you that 5 black boys and 5 Hispanic girls and 5 gay men were going to be beaten to near close to death by hate groups in the coming months if you voted for him, but that you would also save 10% on your taxes, would that be enough? Please just put a dollar amount on it so at least I know that there is a cold calculus to your selfishness and that it’s not just complete arbitrary indifference.
Was it because Bill got a blowjob in the oval office? Tell me how it is that you don’t trust the woman who was married to a sexual predator while then turning around and endorsing a genuine sexual predator. Endorsing a man who proudly admits to walking in on underage girls naked in a dressing room, who admits to grabbing women by their genitals, whose list of sexist misogynistic quotes and exploits has now reached novel-length proportions.
How will that talk go when you explain to your daughters and sons how being a sexual predator is definitely not ok, unless you’re a rich white man running for president.
And yes I say “white man” because in that same talk you are going to have to explain to them why it is that had Obama (the candidate) fathered five children to three different foreign supermodels, openly bragged about grabbing girls by the pussy, while in the middle of defending himself in a teenage rape case, you would have started bleeding out of your eyeballs.
Or maybe it was all about jobs for you. The idea that our jobs are all disappearing and that this man has a genius plan to somehow bring back all the manufacturing. A compelling narrative were it not for every respected economist who says otherwise, but maybe they are in on the conspiracy too.
Also, how is it that the party of personal accountability and “pulling yourself up by your own bootstraps” is now calling foul when they think the government is not helping them out enough? How is it that when the economy isn’t working for minorities or people of color, it’s because those people are “lazy”, but when doesn’t work for white people in Middle America, it’s the Black President’s fault? And that somehow the only person who can clean up that Black President’s “mess” is the man who never met a Chinese factory he didn’t like.
Or was it perhaps all the government corruption that got to you? The shock and horror that politics is a dirty game. If that’s the case then tell me how electing one of the most underhanded, bankrupting, thin-skinned, fraudulent, law-suit magnets of the entire business community was your solution for that corruption.
(Spoiler alert: if you weren’t paying attention, his police line-up of potential cabinet appointees reads like a who’s who of careerist political hacks, lobbyist mouth pieces, gay bashers, and science deniers, but I digress.)
Maybe it was immigration or the wall or refugees or maybe you just wanted to give liberal Hollywood a giant middle finger while you still tuned in every night and watched their shows and bought their music.
Whatever your particular gripe or worry or problem is, I assure you the answer to your problems do not exist inside the brain of Donald Trump and you actually know that. And I know you know that because the polls were so off. They were so off because you were too embarrassed, too ashamed to admit publicly that you were casting a vote for this fraud but you did it anyways. How brave of you.
So no, I will never listen to you lecture me again on the merits of “true American exceptionalism”.
I will laugh when you start to tell me about how you care so deeply for the constitution after electing a man who has no knowledge or respect for it except that part about the guns because apparently that’s the only part you think is worth fighting for.
I’ll laugh even harder when you try telling me that you care or know more about the military or the safety of our troops when you just elected a man who will put them at greater risk because he knows not where or when or how they should be utilized.
I’ll ask you to stop talking when you start droning on about how you somehow understand the economy better. How you relentlessly peddled the virtues of an unmitigated free-market and then went ahead and elected a man who built an empire on outsourcing jobs who then blamed liberals for the failures of the very same free-market you championed for every election prior.
I will tune out as soon as you utter a sentence to me about moral decency. After you spent every election up to now using godliness and religiosity as the final arbiter of a candidate’s presidential fitness. After you proceeded to tear down and denigrate one of the more decent men to take the oath of office only to then elect a man who has neither moral code nor spiritual backbone.
A man who owns a gold-plated private jet and yet has paid zero in taxes.
A man with a proven history of sexual harassment on par with third world dictators in shitty action movies.
A man with no understanding or commitment to service except to himself.
And lastly, I will walk away the moment you try to tell me that this wasn’t about bigotry. That somehow, bigotry and small mindedness can be separated out from your vote. This election was entirely about race and sexual orientation and gender and privilege for those people who are most affected by those very things. And if you can’t see that, if you can’t understand that, if you can’t get inside the head of every sexual assault victim and Hispanic kid and black man and gay teenager who woke up on November 9th feeling terrified and betrayed, if you can’t even muster the most basic levels of human empathy in an attempt to understand the kind of America that you just thrust upon them with your vote for this man, then I wish you the best. Please lose my number.
Yes, Hillary was no shining beacon of moral holiness but her ethical shortcomings were entirely those of a lifelong politician and not of a lifelong human being. If you can’t make out the difference between those two things then you are not mentally or morally fit enough to step foot inside a voting booth.
And now, this week, you want me to take you seriously when you tell me to “calm down” and “stop protesting” and “support our president”. Just now. After you spent the last eight years stomping your feet and crying and impeding and disrespecting a moderately left president whose successes were all in spite of you and never along side of you. How charitable. How noble. How patriotic of you.
You want me to normalize the fact that you just needlessly endangered all of us? Normalize how you played recklessly and selfishly with what we’ve worked so hard the past 250 years to build up?
And you risked all of it because a reality TV show host told you that we weren’t great anymore. Because a con-man sold you shit-colored glasses and then convinced you that everything around you was crap.
So please don’t tell me to calm down. Don’t ask me to normalize this. You put us all on a plane with no eject button coming in for a landing during a lightning storm. And you thought it smart to shoot all the other qualified pilots in the head before asking a man to take control of the cockpit who thinks he’s driving a racecar. Also, he lied to you about how good of a racecar driver he was.
I think it’s pretty fucking rational to be worried right now.
I think it’s rational to never trust your reasons for picking pilots ever again.