Janet

Whereas Carol is not bothered by what I consider Trump’s questionable outbursts and comments, the same cannot be said for her best friend Janet. Janet, born in 1952, is one year older than Carol. They met in Catholic grade school. Though neither has maintained a steady relationship with Catholicism, their friendship is still going strong.

Janet has been married to the same man for more than 40 years. Her husband is often on the road for his job selling agricultural supplies throughout the region. She has two grown children. Her son is a police officer. Her daughter is married to a Mexican-American. She is a grandmother to several tiny tots.

Though she actually may be steelier at the core than Carol, her exterior is much softer. Janet gives out far more hugs than business cards. Janet has held a range of jobs from clothing store manager to tax preparer. Now she oversees the day-to-day operations at the marijuana shop where she is the salt to Carol’s pepper.

Janet, perhaps more than most of the women I’ve spoken with, finds Trump disgusting. Unfortunately, she finds Clinton more disgusting. Trump may be guilty of various forms of sexual misconduct, but Clinton is guilty of downplaying similar behavior perpetrated by her husband. In the aftermath of Bill’s sex scandals, Hillary did not come across as being particularly supportive of his victims. If Hillary had denounced her husband’s actions, perhaps even separated from him or divorced him, it might have been easier to believe she took those issues seriously. Instead, it appeared that women’s concerns only mattered if they didn’t get in the way of her political ambitions.

Janet points out that for every bad thing about Trump, Clinton pretty much goes toe-to-toe. Both have insulted or dismissed groups of people, both have gotten rich and powerful using questionable means, and both have ties to elite groups (deep-pocketed interest groups vs. billionaire cronies) that likely will affect their agendas.

Both give off a similar sense that “normal people” rules don’t apply to them. Private server? Not paying taxes? Perhaps neither is illegal exactly, but they don’t seem particularly ethical either.

To Janet, here is the number one difference between the candidates: Clinton has done all of these things while in various positions of public service. For this reason alone, Joyce says she holds Clinton to a higher standard.

Janet finds Clinton untrustworthy at least in part because she is so much more adept than Trump at concealing her true motives and feelings. Trump may mock a disabled person from a worldwide stage, but if he can’t keep a lid on something as obviously wrong as that, there’s probably not much he keeps hidden.

I’ve heard and read the opinion from some people who didn’t support Trump that a vote for him was an affirmation of every aspect of his character—the implication being that you, too, support a registry for Muslims or that you give a metaphorical thumbs up to everything he’s said about women or black people or Mexicans. This seems reasonable until I turn the tables.

I see clearly the ways in which Hillary was a less-than-ideal candidate. She voted for war. She’s gotten rich on the dime of special interests groups—and who knows how many “backroom deals” she’s negotiated. Looking back, I don’t think she handled her husband’s various sex scandals as well as she could have. Undeniably, an element of her political persona is less than authentic. I’ve chalked this up to the compromises she’s had to make to be taken seriously in the political arena. But maybe I’ve been too dismissive of her flaws.

When I voted for Clinton did it mean I supported every comment or decision she’s ever made? I certainly hope not.

But if I’m willing to let myself off the hook for Hillary’s bad qualities, why am I so inclined to hold Trump supporters accountable for his every misogynistic or xenophobic impulse?

Janet doesn’t think Trump’s bad qualities are more evil than Hillary’s. Janet thinks the worst of his are hyperbole and bluster whereas Clinton’s have actually hurt and killed people. Yes, I say, but do you know how many people he is likely to harm and endanger now that he’s in office?

Then I realize how insane this conversation is. We are judging presidential candidates by who’s done or will do the least amount of damage, by who is likely to ruin the fewest lives, by who we think has lied and cheated less.

This makes the evangelical Christian support for Trump all the more mysterious to me…

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14 thoughts on “Janet

  1. The difference in the Evangelical Christian’s attitude is simply based on God’s forgiveness. God forgives me, and any, no matter their previous actions, who turn to him and ask. Trump claims to have done that. Only God knows for sure, but Hilary just continues to deny or ignore. Therefore, if God can forgive, and He is the one who will determine the final judgement, who am I to not? None of us are perfect…… Merry Christmas,

    Betty Southard _www.bettysouthard.com_ (http://www.bettysouthard.com/) Those who put out the people’s eyes, reproach them for their blindness. -John Milton, poet (9 Dec 1608-1674)

  2. Psalms 145:3,4 says: “Do not put your trust in princes nor in a son of man, who cannot bring salvation. His spirit goes out, he returns to the ground; on that very day his thoughts perish.” In other words, why should we put our trust in any man, since all men (and women) alike die, are buried, and are dead with no more thought process. According to several other Bible verses, the only future hope for all who have died is the hope of a future resurrection of the dead. Solomon wisely said (Ecclesiastes 1:14): “I saw all the works that were done under the sun, and look! everything was futile, a chasing after the wind.” To me it suggests that it doesn’t really matter who is in office in any country. God’s purposes will prevail, and in the end his will will be done. (Matthew 6:10).

  3. Well, we know where this is from. At least we can’t blame Jehovah’s Witnesses for putting Trump in office. They don’t vote nor salute the flag and are not interested in politics.

  4. This to me is the classic definition of false equivalencies. First, most of what’s been thrown at Hillary Clinton have been unsubstantiated rumors generated by 30 years in the GOP’s crosshairs. Specifically in 2016, it was Hillary running for President, not her husband. She didn’t have any affairs nor was she accused (falsely or otherwise) of forcing herself on anyone. Trump, on the other hand, stands accused by at least a dozen women. The one time Bill Clinton was called to task, he—however grudgingly—admitted his wrongdoing publically. Trump made light if his “conquests” and bragged about “locker room” talk. He ridiculed his accusers on Twitter, insulting their physical appearance and integrity. The young woman who was scheduled to bring Trump tot trial for sexual assault withdrew her complaint due to death threats from his rabid followers. If we’re going to condemn Hillary for staying with Bill, shouldn’t we also condemn Melania for standing by Donald after worse and substantiated accusations?
    If you want to get Biblical, Jesus clearly and unequivocally condemned adultery and divorce. Only one of the two candidates is known to have committed both.

    Yes, we can and should question a candidate’s actions in light of their publically-stated positions. In almost 40 years of voting, I’ve never agreed 100% with any candidate or party. I try to consider the candidate’s overall tone and character. We will all have much to answer for before God’s throne. It’s not the mistakes we’ve made, it’s what we’ve done about them that will count. Only one candidate advocated registering people based on their faith, mocked the disabled, incited violence at his rallies and has still failed to condemn hate crimes done in his name.

  5. I have thought long and deeply about whether I would even enter this arena again – discussing my feelings and reasons for my vote in the election and what I feel about a Donald Trump presidency – and I probably should not do this. But I am going to, damn the consequences.

    I voted for Bill Clinton his first term for the exact and specific reason of getting Hillary Clinton to the White House. Her past works as a children’s and women’s advocate have always impressed me. Her work with registering migrant workers to vote, her health care plans as First Lady – EVERYTHING I have ever seen her do, with the one exception of voting for the Iraq war as a Senator – has been admirable, as far as I am concerned.

    What I feel about her treatment of the women Bill Clinton had an affair with is that SHE was much nicer than I would have been. If I had been his wife, my first response would have been to roll him up in a blanket and use a skillet on his private parts, and THEN have gone after the women who slept with him. They would have come out of it hairless, at best. Sorry if that offends anyone, but that is exactly how I feel about it. In no instances were any of the charges against Bill Clinton about ‘force’ ever validated, so there are no ‘victims’ as far as I can see, just “co-adulterers”, unlike Trump’s “grab them up the skirt” habits.

    As to her staying with her husband, all I can say is that she is better at forgiving than I am. Perhaps her marriage vows actually MEANT something to her, do you think???? And let’s contrast that with how Trump views his marriage vows.

    On the subject of Bengazhi, which I am sure comes to the argument any time Clinton is being discussed, I would simply say that 1) after millions of dollars and endless probes (8), no Republican has ever managed to prove wrongdoing and 2) As Secretary of State, she wasn’t even in the chain of command that lead to Bengazhi.

    Now, on the subject of Donald Trump: the moment the tape was played with the now famous ‘P’ statement in it, that would have ended any thoughts I ever had had about voting for him, if I ever HAD had any (which I didn’t).

    Those who know me from the original “One None Gets Some” posts know that I am an incest survivor. I lived for nine years of my life at the mercy of a sexual predator who could come in and treat me the same way any time he wanted. I personally, deeply and emphatically understand the predatory nature of Trump and exactly what that makes him as a human being: a WOPOS. My daughter and I have coined that terms for “Waste of Oxygen, Piece of Shit”. That is rude, crude and cause for Confession on Sundays, but it is exactly what I think of him as a human being, and there isn’t anything – short of an abject apology to the entire race of women – that will change that opinion. And as far as I am concerned, “oh…that was just locker room talk” doesn’t constitute an apology.

    So it was relatively simple for me: would I vote for a woman who has spent an entire life getting things done for others (Trump?? not so much) or for a misyognist, bigoted (N word anyone? – don’t rent to them no matter what???), SERIAL adulterer who has never apparently regretted any of his marriages, (only regretted when he couldn’t talk someone else into adultery while his wife was pregnant), and who cherishes his total ignorance; who is a lousy business man and a serial liar two or three times in the same sentence…

    Well. I won’t go on. Just count me in the “Not MY President” category for the next four years. There are people I know, people at church, who are elderly and voted for Trump because they never watch anything but Fox News. I try not to find out who they are because I don’t want to grapple with the feelings of ill will that brings up in me. For those who I know KNOW what Trump is and voted for him with eyes wide open, I prefer to avoid them. I try to hate the sin and love the sinner, but I am having a hard time with that right now.

    Because I know that God brings great good out of great evil (and on the “by their fruits ye shall know them” basis, Trump IS evil”,), I am trying to deal with the upcoming years in trust that good can come. I am just having trouble dealing with the anger I feel right now. And the fact that those idiotic enough to vote for him will suffer just as much as I, who didn’t, doesn’t bring me any comfort or any less anger. It’s going to be a loooonnnnngggg presidency.

    Understand: I do NOT care if he can bring jobs back (he will have to get rid of his own foreign workers for a start), nor promise infrastructure, nor start a trade war with China which will end the way ALL tariffs have ended historically, with economic downturn, nor promise a wall he cannot leverage the money to pay for because Mexico certainly won’t. I don’t care about any of that. I only care that an ugly (inside) sexual predator now has the most power of any man in the world. And that is a really ugly thought to any woman who has ever suffered from one.

    With deep sincerity,

    • We all know how Corinna strives for diplomacy, but I can’t help but get a vision of her fist-pumping after reading your comment, Patti.

      I sure as hell just did.

      • I grieve for so many women and girls right now, because I know that all of the horror they have felt in past has been flagrently thrown in their faces. I don’t want to feel the way I do, but I just couldn’t avoid saying what I felt anymore. Thanks for your support; you are, as ever, a good friend.

    • Hi Patti, Thank you for sharing this impassioned statement. I completely understand and support where you are coming from. I’m curious what your thoughts are on reconciling how you feel about DT with those who voted for him. You must have friends or family who voted for Trump. Has it created a rift to mend? What are your thoughts on loving one another regardless of who is president?

      • I have been honest about how I feel about Trump, so I might as well be honest about how I feel about those who voted for him. I am having a very, very difficult time over this. I have been in a state of turmoil since Nov. 9th, and am like to be for a very long time.

        It is not pleasant to experience hatred, because it does not affect the person you are hating nearly as much as it affects you. It puts you in a state of distancing yourself from God, and that makes it even hard to get over the hatred you are trying to get over. It is consuming, painful, enraging and heartbreaking. And I have felt real, gut level deep hatred for anyone who could overlook what Trump is for the sake of gaining power, or winning an election. And for people in my own family with whom I had discussed what I posted before and who could then….vote for Trump. Let us make the situation even more difficult by saying that my religion requires that I pray for my enemies, my church liturgy requires that I pray for those in government and in power over me, and I am supposed to be ‘in love and charity with my neighbor’ before taking Body and Blood in Communion.

        How am I dealing with that? Not very well. I pray constantly. How do I deal with praying for a man and an administration I see as evil, without being a complete and deep dyed hypocrite? I have a daily prayer: May God return to Trump, his administration team, the GOP and all those who were part of his election, in full and overflowing measure, EXACTLY the same level of honesty, integrity, truthfulness and DECENCY they showed during the election and while they are in power. It may not be the ideal prayer, but it is the only one I can make where there is truth in my heart for God to see.

        Secondly, I pray that God will change my heart as He sees fit, because I am honest enough to admit that I am completely incapable of even wanting to change it. This one is up to the Holy Spirit. I pray to be receptive. The best I can do now is to pray daily that God make me WANT to not hate the people who support Trump in any way or who voted for him. That is the best I can do.

        Sunday I had an experience that will help that prayer down the road a bit, I think. A very elderly friend at church and I were discussing a Nigerian friend’s situation. He (the young Nigerian) is finishing his MA and must find a job here in the states, in his field, in order to stay. The elderly friend piped up with “Oh, with Trump as president there should be jobs.” I gently pointed out that our friend was….Nigerian…and that probably counted against him. It went right over her head. She actually showed no concept at all of how isolationist and nationalist Trump’ agenda really is. It just isn’t occuring to her that our friend will probably not be welcome, though I pray that he will find a job.

        Now, I really love this person, and for the first time I could find it in my heart to realize that I did love her, I just hated her ignorance and what she had done. But she had done it thinking and believing (wrongly) the best. I doubt if she ever even heard the “P” tape. I know she would have been utterly horrified to think that a man like that was running for President, but Fox news didn’t exactly highlight it and I would imagine that is her prinmary source of information.

        It was a gift from God to face this, and to try and look differently at the fact that many probably voted in ignorance. My friend did make sure to ascertain first that our Nigerian friend was “LEGAL, wasn’t he?” So I know that we still disagree radically, but I also realized that I couldn’t hate her. I guess I will be grateful for taking it one person at a time.

        Now, I have a cousin by marriage who sat at our table and we discussed, in detail, the problems we had with Trump’s sexual predation record in relation to my life, with his complete lack of personal or spiritual integrity – and she said she would still be voting for him because he was a ‘conservative’ (lol, lol, lol) and so was she. I looked her in the eyes and said “His fruit is rotton, his actions are rotton…you can’t possibly vote for him.”, knowing that she would.

        In all honesty, I don’t care if I never see her or speak to her again. Hopefully, that will change someday, but right at this moment, she is deeply toxic to me in the same way that a bottle of alcohol is toxic to an alcoholic. So distance is my salvation here, and again, praying that I will at some point want to not hate her. That is how I feel about most of the people who voted for Trump.

        There are many people who will say what a dreadful Christian I am. I can only respond to that that God knows my heart, and if I can’t lie internally, what value is there in lying externally? And that God knows I want my heart to change.. But He’s going to have to continue helping with the anger.

        I don’t know if that was the answer you were thinking of, but it is the most truthful I can be.

        I also want to express my deepest thanks to you for proving me a ‘safe’ place to express and clarify my feelings. This whole situation has been a somewhat drastic life event, and it continues.

        With sincerity,
        Patti

        • Patti, only a fool would say you are not a good and true Christian. You’ve spoken the truth in love far too many times on this blog and in our private emails to be that hard on yourself. Nowhere in the Gospels does Jesus tell us to embrace sin as a social norm. Quite the opposite; he overturned the money changing tables and condemned the Pharisees for abusing their authority. “Brood of vipers” anyone? Even the tax collector with whom He had dinner swore to repay anyone whom he’d cheated four-fold. And Jesus told the woman caught in adultery to go and sin no more, not get married two more times and run for president as a “conservative” Christian. One of the most disgusting moments of the campaign was when Trump claimed the IRS was auditing him because he was such a “strong Christian”. Why God didn’t strike him off the face of the earth at that moment, I’ll never understand.

          You feel hatred because hatred is all that came out of Trump’s campaign. I can add this to your experience: my wife is a naturalized citizen from Mexico, well-educated, a senior manager in her company, well-known in our church and a patriotic voter. And she is horrified and frightened by what Trump has unleashed. She knows first-hand how easy it is for people to classify her based on her appearance. Just as your friend asked if your friend was “LEGAL”, people now feel free to question her “legality”.

          We are supposed to be repulsed by evil. As Christians, we are also supposed to combat it wherever we find it, especially in ourselves. Jesus wasn’t a big fan of rationalization for the sake of political expediency. As I said earlier, it would require a stupendous degree of cognitive dissonance to define oneself as a Christian while supporting Trump–and a blind eye when evil stares us in the face.

          • You have pinpointed one of the aspects of this that bothers me the most, and that is that turning of a blind eye by those who purport to be Christians. I have read articles from evangelical sites that were all about how vital it was to elect Trump so he could pack the Supremme Court and overturn Roe vs Wade, and that meant looking at him as God looked at Solomon, or David – a sinner who could da good thing. But those men repented. Trump doesn’t seem to know the meaning of the word, if your dictionary defines it as “turning away from something”.

            I a not supposed to judge them, but I am failing miserably. I am hoping I can find a way to actually, rationally discuss the subject with people, but right now, not a good idea. The emotions are too raw. And I have to try to find that way not to turn a blind eye myself.

            You know, I wish I could have avoided being “born in interesting times.” Cowardly, but OH, so much easier. Sigh.

            Patti

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