Inevitably, there comes an election cycle where people start talking about moving to Canada if Candidate X wins the race. Of course, this is mostly an expression of a dislike for a candidate rather than a serious intention. As far as I can tell, there was no statistical increase in out-migration to Canada when Bush Jr. won, for example.
Now Candidate X is Donald Trump, and I think it’s time for me to finally speak up and say “Shut up about moving to Canada and do something useful instead!” Talking about moving to Canada is about as lazy as you can get in helping avoid this outcome. So instead of making that your next Facebook post, go and convince someone else not to vote for Donald Trump. As much as you hate to admit it, you very likely know people who will vote for him if you don’t do something about it. Don’t believe? Go ask your friends who they’re planning on voting for. Eventually, you will find at least one person who will say (maybe hesitatingly) “Donald Trump.”
The next thing to say to such a person is not “How could you possibly be so stupid?” or “Our friendship is over!” even if that’s what you’re thinking. What you should do next is find out why that person thinks Donald Trump is the best option this country has and listen to the answer. Don’t assume that anyone who’s willing to vote for Trump is crazy or racist – they may be, but telling them that won’t convince them not to vote for Trump. Instead, engage in a discussion with them about whether their reasons for voting for Trump are justified. Tell them why you’re not voting for Trump and why you think he’s the wrong choice for America in general (other than “He’s an orange-faced idiot”). Help them see that voting for Trump is not in their best interest. Yes, this is a lot harder than lamenting the sad state of American politics, threatening to move to Canada, and calling Trump supporters names. But it’s also a lot more productive. You might even learn something along the way!
To give you some ideas, I will tell you why I think Trump is the absolutely the wrong choice. To keep my posts from getting too long, I’ll do one reason per post. So today will be reason #1 why no one should vote for Donald Trump: we should not let anyone with absolutely no political experience be President, regardless of how smart they are, how much money they’ve made, or how good their ideas are. We don’t let pilots straight out of flight school fly international jetliners – they have to fly regional jets for a while. No one gets to build a house or a bridge until they’ve built something smaller – again, no matter how brilliant they are. Anyone who wants to be President should first do something easier – Congressman, governor, even city mayor. It’s too important of a job to trust to someone completely inexperienced at that particular job.
I know that one of the reasons people support Trump is because they’re tired of politicians’ crap. I very much sympathize with that sentiment. But the solution to that is to look for better politicians, not to take a chance on someone who has never held political office. The better politicians are out there and they can rise to the top. We put the current ones in charge and we can replace them. But let’s start from the bottom up and not the top. Too many lives are at stake to let inexperienced pilots fly 500-person planes; too many lives are affected by the US President for us to pick someone who has no experience governing.