Column: Trump does not represent my America

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Election Day is today, and while many people understandably feel “hopeless” this presidential election, I feel “hopeful.” I feel hopeful because we have the privilege to vote for the leader of our nation. I feel hopeful because I believe we have the capability to differentiate between right and wrong, love and hate, and war and peace. I feel hopeful because I believe we know better than to elect Donald Trump as the next president of the United States of America.

My mother was born on Election Day, and my grandfather, a die-hard Republican, made my grandmother vote — while she was in labor — before he took her to the hospital. While I consider myself Independent, Republican blood runs through my veins and I still lean more to the right than I do to the left. For this reason, in addition to my concerns and doubts about Hillary Clinton, I tried desperately hard to get on board the Trump train after coming to terms with the fact that he is the Republican Presidential Nominee. I convinced myself, at one point, that surely Donald Trump would be better than that “untrustworthy woman” who “refused to bake cookies.” Then, I challenged myself to reevaluate that opinion, and if you have any doubts about your own opinion regarding this election, I challenge you to reevaluate your thinking as well … and I am hopeful that you will reach the conclusion I have.

Donald Trump simply does not represent the America I so proudly and thankfully call my home. Donald Trump does not represent the Republican Party my grandfather so passionately believed in and loved. Donald Trump does not represent the future I want for this country, that is, in my opinion, already great. Donald Trump represents racism, misogyny and corruption. Donald Trump represents a great danger to our nation. He has already changed the way American politics works, but we have the opportunity to make sure he does not change the way the American presidency works, and for that matter, the way the world works. I feel hopeful because it is not too late for America to choose someone else. I feel hopeful because I am not alone in this realization.

I feel hopeful because even “thirty former GOP lawmakers sign[ed]” and released an “anti-Trump letter” today, according to Dana Bash and Tal Kopan on CNN. I feel hopeful because more and more people, regardless of political party affiliation and political views, are reaching this conclusion.

I feel hopeful because we do not have to support the man who, as the former GOP lawmakers who signed the most recent anti-Trump letter wrote according to CNN, “insults women, mocks the handicapped, urges that dissent be met with violence, seeks to impose religious tests for entry into the United States, offends our allies and praises dictators,” whose “public statements are peppered with lies,” and a man who “belittles our heroes and insults the parents of men who have died serving our country.”

I feel hopeful because the choice is ours. I feel hopeful because our votes matter. I feel hopeful because our voices matter. I feel hopeful because we do not have to support an individual who treats some lives as inferior to others. I feel hopeful because we do not have to support an individual who, according to former GOP lawmakers, “makes a mockery” of the very principles of the party he is representing this election — and who makes a mockery of the very principles our nation was founded on.

I feel hopeful because we do not have to support a man who divides us, both in our own nation as well as throughout the entire world. I feel hopeful because we have an opportunity some people have died trying to reach. I feel hopeful because we are the voters who will decide the next President of the United States, and I feel hopeful because I believe that person will not be Donald Trump.

Moriah Harman can be contacted at [email protected]

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