Sunday, January 10, 2010

The unwelcome approach of January 19

In a bit over a week, those of us in Massachusetts will be asked to go to the polls and choose a new United States Senator to serve out the rest of Ted Kennedy’s term. I will go to the polls, but I will not vote for a candidate on the ballot.

Martha Coakley is deeply unprincipled. She serves her own ambition, and nothing else. She does not believe in the rule of law, or fairness, or justice. She willfully damaged her community as a prosecutor over and over again. She sanctioned child molestation, shielded predators, and persecuted the innocent. And when given the responsibility to hire and train young attorneys, she coached them to lie to judges, conceal evidence, and do everything in their considerable power to destroy people’s lives, innocent or not, in a quest for headlines.

I will not consent to give a person like that my vote.

While I would prefer that political candidates be, on the whole, cut from better cloth than they generally are, I do not refuse to vote for candidates simply because they are thoroughly flawed. I do not refuse to vote for candidates simply because their ideals, principles, beliefs, goals, or actions are at odds with some of mine. I can overlook a lot, but I cannot vote for a person I truly believe is evil. I believe with all my heart that Martha Coakley’s success has been a triumph of evil.

I know that there are many good people and informed people who will vote for Martha Coakley. You, dear reader, may be one of those people. You may believe that Martha Coakley cannot possibly be as bad or dangerous or immoral as all that, or you may believe that there are other concerns which warrant voting for someone who is. If so, please know that I disagree.

I do not wish for a Scott Brown victory next week. But despite my abhorrence of many of Scott Brown’s positions, I think that encouraging Martha Coakley's long-term political ambitions would be worse for our commonwealth and for our country.

The likely outcome of this election is a small turnout and a huge victory for Martha Coakley, just as she had in the primary. The best outcome, in my opinion, would be a small victory for Martha Coakley and a large turnout of people not voting for any of these candidates. A higher than expected number of voters who do not vote for any of the candidates on the ballot is the best way to encourage new candidates in the 2012 election for this seat, the election that will seat a Senator for 6 years instead of 2. Your vote cannot stop the media from telling fictions about the significance of this election or the reasons for your vote. But your vote should reflect your conscience.

If you share my values and would be swayed by my opinion, please vote for the write-in candidate of your imagination. That is what I will do on January 19.

Friday, January 8, 2010