By Sheilagh Lichtenfels
Published: September 28th, 2016
Monday’s presidential debate between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, though strange and at times hard to follow, made one thing abundantly clear: the Republican nominee for president has no respect for voters.
Contrasting starkly with Clinton, who if nothing else was punishingly prepared for this event, Trump was rambling, incoherent, and evasive of the questions posed by moderator Lester Holt. From his baseless attacks on Clinton for not “look[ing] presidential” to his bizarre digression into insulting Rosie O’Donnell, Trump attempted unceasingly to turn what should have been a reasoned argument over policy and principle into a spectacle. This registered voter has had enough.
People seeking to be the president of this nation have a responsibility to the voters. They must respect our time and our attention. They must seek our support by attempting to be the better candidate, not the louder one. Trump’s superficial campaign strategy may have secured him the nomination, but the presidency is too great a responsibility to be won with provocative rhetoric. I need a president who prepares for debates, one who is thoughtful and deliberate in their speech, one who understands the political process and respects the Constitution. A man who hopes to make America great again by instituting the unconstitutional measure of “stop and frisk” at a federal level understands neither America nor greatness.
It is time for voters to take seriously their democratic power. Trump has barely tried and decisively failed to prove himself equal to the task of running our nation. Hillary Clinton, though far from the ideal candidate for many voters, is not wasting our time. Donald Trump has demonstrated time and time again both his contempt for our political process and his unwillingness to devote any substantive effort to creating a policy platform. He has refused to engage in even the most basic responsibilities of a presidential nominee. He has refused to honor his supporters.
In November, this charade will come to an end, and we will be left with either a president who gives a damn about his or her job or one who does not. The only way to influence the outcome is to vote.