David Nightingale: Presidential Candidates, So Far

Jul 28, 2019

As of July 2019, there are 3 or 4 democratic candidates I’d consider voting for, but although I lean that way I am not a registered Democrat. So far, my personal favorite is ‘Mayor Pete’ of Indiana.

Looking back, I was never enamored of the junior Bush, who turned America’s attention irrelevantly to Iraq rather than to Al Qaeda in Afghanistan and Bin Laden of Saudi Arabia. After Bush junior I was delighted when the intelligent and thoughtful Barack Obama was elected, and especially that we saw fit to give him eight years, although I found myself constantly worrying that some who dislike dark skin might attempt assassination.

As an Independent I cannot be accused of being on ‘one particular side’ in what has become near civil war. Further, if our current president and followers had their way I might be sent back to Africa, where I was born (but which is not actually the land of my English and Schleswig-Holstein ancestors.) Indeed, if there was anything logical in what Mr. Trump tweets – a very tall order – then perhaps the Irish should return to Ireland, the Italians to Italy, and he himself to Germany.

In 2016 I never thought that a character like Donald Trump could ever get elected, (and have been in a degree of disbelief, or even in a bad dream, ever since). There is now the depressing possibility that he could be re-elected. What is wrong with us? In this temporarily Republican world, duly elected non-white congresswomen are lined up on TV as if they were criminals. To me, this illustrates the dire state our country is in: there are huge numbers standing behind Trump and cheering his ill-thought-out rants. Presidential Adviser Kellyanne Conway is seen on TV gazing with unadulterated adulation as he denies this-and-that verifiable action, and puts down the ‘fake-news’ press.

So who are the 3 or 4 Democratic candidates I respect so far? Almost any candidate of the ilk of Mayor Pete, or Elizabeth Warren or Cory Booker or Kamala Harris. Mayor Pete – and I hope he will soon emphatically pronounce his name for us – has earned Harvard and Oxford degrees and is a Rhodes Scholar, as is Stanford and Yale Cory Booker. Warren, who has been a professor in various law schools, including Harvard, and was long ago a registered Republican, seems more than competent, and I also commend feisty Kamala Harris, a 52 year-old black and Indian DA with a JD degree from the University of California. Why do I put store into a person’s education? It is because mental ability with honesty are basic necessities for leading a huge nation, – but I would also admit that an energetic nurse, lineman, farmer, without any degrees, might indeed possess the intelligence and abilities required.

As an example, Marianne Williamson – she was the one at the left end of the TV screen on the 2nd debate of the Democratic candidates – has no college degree, but has espoused important views concerning values that we need to care about to. Her book “Healing the Soul of America” is the kind of thing we’ve been suppressing in this worsening warfare between Red and Blue. While she doesn’t stand a chance, other candidates might benefit from some of her mentation.

So those are my preliminary leanings, and if only we could put aside our pathetic emphasis on whether someone is gay, or bi, or pink or dark-skinned, my preference so far is for the thoughtful Mayor Pete.

David Nightinglale is an emeritus professor of physics at SUNY New Paltz where he taught for 31 years. His first novel, The Centauri Settlement, is produced by TheBookPatch.com .

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