Tonight we have the second debate between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. Before watching you might like to read Diplomad’s thoughts, which are generally the same as my own.
In response to anyone who is on the fainting couch over the latest peek into Donald Trump’s character, and can’t imagine how anyone could vote for such a man (and this includes some of my own friends and family), I will paraphrase my own comments, from an earlier thread:
There is not a single person (that I’m aware of, anyway) voting for Donald Trump who doesn’t already know that he is a deeply unattractive candidate. I’m not here to defend Donald Trump against the many valid criticisms that can be raised against him. He is in many ways a grotesque and unsophisticated man. He’s a vain and preening popinjay, an unlettered boor of low tastes, and far too prone to bullying and childish insults. We can now add juvenile sexual bluster to that list of shortcomings.
Sadly, however, either Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton will be our next president. That’s it; it’s that simple. It’s a horrible choice to have to make, but to me, and to million of other Americans, the decision is painfully clear. No tasteless remarks the press may dig up between now and November will change it; the ickiness of Donald Trump is already fully “baked in”.
I, and millions of others, believe that for all of Donald Trump’s obvious faults, the focused and ruthless malevolence of the Clintons is by any measure worse — by orders of magnitude — and that a Hillary Clinton presidency would be a catastrophe from which the traditional American nation, already gravely wounded, would never recover. That woman must never be president. She and her husband must never again wield the levers of political power in this nation.
If you are like many people I know in my deep-blue circle of friends and neighbors, you don’t agree with any of this, and the chance of persuading you otherwise is nil. We have, then, an intractable difference of opinion, and any conversation we might have about it will be completely unproductive.
All I can say at this point is: these are parlous times. You vote as your conscience demands, and I will do the same.
Post-debate note: Trump was strong, and punched hard. It was what he needed to do. He owned his lewd remarks. He rightly pointed out that the Clintons have no claim whatsoever to the moral high ground when it comes to treatment of women. The hot-mike tape will now recede into the distance. He also put the income-tax issue behind him with brusque effectiveness, and was cheered by the audience for saying that Hillary Clinton belongs in jail. (Which she does.)
This isn’t over yet.