Like so many Americans (the majority of whom did not vote for Donald Trump), I’ve struggled mightily with the results of this election because I respect so deeply the office of the presidency and everything it stands for in our democracy.

I’ve gone back and forth about how to think about the legitimacy of the Trump election, and in doing so I’ve tried to keep my emotional, moral, and spiritual revulsion of the man separate from the fact that he won the Electoral College and therefore, according to our Constitution, he will be legally President of the United States.

But this election is unlike any this country has ever endured, and so it has to be understood in the only way that’s true and honest – that this election was indeed corrupted by Russia, FBI Director Comey, and what I have come to believe is Trump’s constant “libel” of Secretary Clinton.

The definition of libel as understood by journalists centers around intent. If the person speaking the lie knows it’s a lie and does so anyway, that is libel. Trump will never admit that he knew that what he said on a daily basis were lies, but he did indeed lie over and over again in ways far exceeding any lie/untruth/exaggeration that Hillary Clinton committed. To compare them does truth-telling a disservice.

Paul Krugman is right – John Lewis is right – and patriotic Americans ought to take heed and follow their lead. I am now doing so.

[Note: I speak only for myself and not for my synagogue or any other organization]

See Krugman’s NY Times Op-Ed here

Op-Ed Columnist
John Lewis on the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Ala., in 2015.

With All Due Disrespect


The patriotic case for frankness about a tainted election.