The dawning hours of the 2016 Election

Courtesy of

Marlee Baker, Editor-In-Chief

Democratic nominee Ms. Hillary Clinton and Republican nominee Mr. Donald Trump: On November 8, only one will be elected into office of Commander-in-Chief, the leader of the Free World. But in the days nearing the election, scandal after scandal seems to arise and fall into focus within the media. Emails and Benghazi. Tax returns and tapes. Do we choose the woman who contains a secret agenda, where the truth about her actions remain vague, unclear and thus dangerous? Or the man who presents daily a warped view of the world, sexist and tainted with racism?

We are forced to decide between the lesser of two evils, as I have heard many allude to about the upcoming election. No longer are political stances an imperative factor, but rather it is the rhetoric and character of these nominees we criticize and discuss. We harshly turn off our TV’s, dread November 8 and ask ourselves, “What has this country gone to? What has happened to the elegance?”

But was this elegance ever there to begin with?

Politics has always been filled with backhanded deals, undercover scandals and “midnight appointments.” Loyalty to party exceeds loyalty to people, and this has been so for generations. One need only open a US History textbook to find proof of these political scandals within history. And today, one need only turn on CNN News.

Is there elegance within these candidates’ characters, their morals? What do these nominees, the future of America’s leadership, represent?

Hillary Clinton has been subjected to relentless inquiries concerning the actions (or lack of) she took in response to a distress call from soldiers within Benghazi within an American Embassy. The truth of those thirteen hours of hesitancy has been exposed in their entirety, and the consequences of them hang like a shadow over the credibility of her reputation. As well as this, her integrity has been compromised in light of the 33,000 deleted emails FBI officials have recently recovered. These emails were “accidentally” sent through a personal address, even though many of these emails contained important — and at times highly confidential — information. From her lack of response to Benghazi, to her lack of concern towards the misdirection of these emails, how responsible can she be to inherit the immense burden of leading America?

Donald Trump is not to be exempt. In the past month alone he has become the center of attention in mainstream media outposts. An audio tape in which Trump is heard bragging about his forceful sexual advancements against women has become publicized, spurring in-depth research into past sexist remarks he has made toward other women. The New York Times has also recently looked into his tax returns from 1995, looking into if he used his loss of $916 million in real estate to cancel out his taxes for 18 years. Is he simply another wealthy businessman with little virtue? Is this desire to become president based purely on the selfish economic gain he could make from controlling America’s markets?

And again, we have returned to the emphasis on character within the rhetoric of this election.

And again, where is this elegance?

It was seen in Thomas Jefferson’s diction when drafting the United States Constitution, establishing the ideals of democracy and freedom that would shape the future of this new nation in ways the world had never seen before. It was seen in the Gettysburg Address given by Abraham Lincoln, commemorating the hallow nature of the Civil War, and those who died fighting for a cause greater than they. It was seen in the inaugural speech of John F. Kennedy, presented on a cold, blistery day that somehow still managed to capture the attention of millions, calling for peace within a time of global uncertainty. These speeches, these documents, are deemed imperative because of the way they eloquently address conflicts, inspire action, encourage compassion — the essence of our humanity — towards others.

So, I ask you to research these nominee’s political stances. Weigh the pros and cons. And ask yourself, which candidate inspires your humanity? Which candidate inspires your hope for a better tomorrow?

The original forefathers of America governed not for personal gain, but for the well-being of the country they loved. They felt it was their duty as an American citizen. Their valor and class distinguished these men as heroes in history.

What will history think of our next president?