If you've noticed the news, you may be aware that American voters will be faced this election season with the following unpleasant choices:
1) Vote for a Republican man who is noted for compromise, who seems soft on moral issues, and who has selected a female running mate. The moderate-feminist ticket.
2) Vote for a Democrat man who is inexperienced, is tolerant and supportive of both pre-and-postpartum infanticide, and who has selected a liberal "Catholic" man as his running mate. The inexperience-infanticide ticket.
3) Vote for a protest candidate for president. (N.B. by "protest" I'm grouping any and all motives for voting for a candidate that realistically has no chance of winning. Obviously, the intention of such voters may not be to protest. For example, a vote for the Constitution party candidate for president could be motivated by a principle of always voting for the best possible candidate on the ballot, by a delusion that he has some chance of winning, or because one promised him one would vote for him. I'm grouping all these motives into the "protest" camp.) The loud vote disposal ticket.
4) Abstain from voting from any presidential candidate. The quiet vote disposal ticket.
Realistically, the only tickets that can succeed in this election season are the moderate-feminist and the infanticide-liberal tickets. Thus, with respect to the determination of their country's future, American voters essentially have their choices:
A) Choose the less abhorrent of the two realistic tickets.
B) Choose the more abhorrent of the two realistic tickets.
C) Choose to let other voters decide.
Given that (B) is a senseless option, really the only two options are:
I. Choose the less abhorrent of the two realistic tickets; or
II. Choose to let other voters decide.
It would seem to me that the American voter's decision between I and II would depend on whether:
a) one believes one knows what the other voters will tend to decide, if left to themselves;
b) whether one considers the matter not as an individual voter but as the sum of all like-minded Christian voters; and
c) whether one believes that letting other voters decide now will have benefits in itself that offset any bad decisions the other voters make.
That is to say, with respect to (a), if one believes that the other voters will anyhow choose the less abhorrent of the two realistic tickets, then one has less incentive to assist them and more incentive to consider the value of option II.
With respect (b), if one considers oneself individually, it is irrational to suppose one's vote matters. If one considers oneself as part of a group of likeminded people, however, one can consider how the group ought to behave. For example, one can consider what the effect on the election would be if all likeminded Christian men selected option II.
With respect to (c), if one believes that option II will result in an even less abhorrent option being available in some future election, that might make one inclined to view the matter as being a more abhorrent candidate now, versus a less abhorrent candidate in the future.
Note Well: this is not a political blog. I am interested in the moral issues posed to voters, not debating the candidates. I am not trying to tell anyone how to vote, I'm simply trying to help Christians provide a framework in which to consider the election, because too often I hear the flawed mantra: "Voting for the lesser of two evils is still voting for evil." Even an abstention (or a protest vote) is effectively a vote of some kind, and Christians need to consider their duty in their role in America as the civil magistrate.