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Twisted Trump

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Co authored with Helen Berger, Resident Scholar Brandeis University Women's Studies Research Center

Often during presidential elections one side or the other claims that if their candidate does not win there will be dire consequences for the country, possibly the world. Certainly, to some degree this is always so. We have learned that elections have consequences. Wars or recessions occur under one president that might not have occurred under another. But this time it is different -really it is different. I know that we have called wolf so often that it sounds like the typical rhetoric of partisans, but it's not.

Why do we say that? Trump said that he would use his powers as president to jail his opponent. This is what dictators do; not democratically elected presidents. Yes, it is probably just hyperbole but words matter and who knows what is and is not bluster with Trump. He regularly praises Putin, a strong man himself. And now he is using the material dumped by Wikileaks that US intelligence has determined was hacked by the Russians. We know they doctored some of it. Here is a foreign power interfering in an US election and Trump is participating. In one instance he read from one of the alleged emails before it was in the public arena. We need to ask how did he get a preview?

More worrisome, as he sinks further and further in the polls, is his claim that the election is rigged. He has already suggested that second amendment people kill his opponent. He is now sending them to "those neighborhoods" to determine who can and cannot vote. What will happen when he loses, which at this point appears likely? Will those well armed men take to the streets to defend their "liberty" believing that the election was stolen?

When Al Gore was declared the loser by the Supreme Court, after winning the popular vote, and undoubtedly winning the state of Florida, he accepted the decision. Why? Because to not accept it, is to bring into question all that maintains our democracy. Trump is no Al Gore, and at the moment, he is threatening our nation.

There is a lot to write about Trump using Wikileaks and now women coming forward to say his locker talk actually led to similar actions outside the locker room. He again threatens to sue those who make public accusations against him. He forgets democracy comes with rights and responsibilities! He doesn't pay taxes. He trashes just about every group except his own. Seems like it is not "Crooked Hillary." It is "Twisted Trump." - Bad business deals, threats, lies!

Let us focus instead on a woman with true grit - Hillary Clinton. She has stood above the fray. She went high when he went low. She acted presidential, strong, indefatigable. She withstood eleven hours of grilling by the Senate, who found nothing worthy of prosecution. She has been sliced and diced and no one seems to be able pin anything on her, though so many have tried. There has been lots of name calling but no bones broken; Hillary has stood tall. She has spoken for women all around the world. She has said Women's rights are Human Rights. She supports families; she realizes the crucial role families play in stabilizing our society and will prioritize their needs. She not only talks about family values, but she promotes policies which will strengthen the families.

We all want a president who will stand up for America, who will negotiate and have patience for the long arduous process of democracy and diplomacy. Hillary is the "man" for the job. She is a proven policy wonk who knows how to put ideas into practice, she has not made democracy a soap opera or the country a laughing stock of the world. Nor does she threaten to bring down the country in her wake if the voters reject her.

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