So often in this unusual presidential debate we have come across apologetic endorsements. People who support Trump or Hillary but only to avoid endorsing the other candidate or because “their” candidate did not win their party nomination.
So in an effort to break the new mold, I would like to say this: I support Hillary Clinton for president. I’m with her, and it has nothing to do with Donald Trump.
Does Trump frighten me? Yes, he does. I find the things he says about women, minorities and immigrants to be hateful and truly dangerous. Having said that, I support Secretary Hillary Clinton for one reason and one reason alone: Secretary Hillary Clinton.
Secretary Clinton’s political and moral beliefs appeal to me. She supports reasonable gun reform – the kind that won’t take your guns but will hold gun sellers to basic ethical standards. For instance, there’s no gun purchases without criminal background checks, which appeal to me as a supporter of the Second Amendment and as a teacher living in a society frequently victimized by school shootings. She supports universal health care. She cares deeply for the rights of the LGBTQ community. She has been a passionate, lifelong supporter of women’s rights – the right to equal pay, the right to choose and the right to reasonable, affordable child care.
Secretary Clinton also demonstrates the grit, professionalism and experience I want to see in a Commander in Chief. Few people on either side of the aisle would argue that she is not, at least in terms of a resume, qualified to be president. Few people have any idea what that job will truly be like on the day they take office. Secretary Clinton has a more nuanced understanding of what the next four years will look like for her if she wins than arguably any candidate in history.
Secretary Clinton’s opinions on some issues have shifted over the years, most notably on LGBTQ issues, which has occasionally earned her flack for being a “flip flopper.” Rather than a flip flopper, I see Secretary Clinton as a true progressive, someone who grows or changes over time as they are introduced to new ideas. We are a vibrant, powerful, ever changing nation, and we need leaders who are willing to change with us. Secretary Clinton changes, she adapts, she evolves. To me, this is not a negative trait. This is something to aspire to.
Finally, throughout this election Secretary Clinton and her opponent have made it clear what kind of America they want to inspire and create. The GOP nominee has encouraged us give in to the basest parts of our nature, to embrace the fear and anger that can be the natural result of turbulent times and to accept the darker parts of our history as not only incurable but worthy of nostalgia.
These are things I am simply unwilling to do.
Instead, I will stand with a woman who believes that recognizing past faults, both personal and national, is a sign of strength, not weakness, and tells us that it is only by standing together and taking pride in our diversity that we can continue to grow into the type of country we have aspired to be since our founding.
Kathryn Miller is a South King County resident.