Let me begin by stating that I, personally, have no problems with any of the candidates. I am excited by all of them. So excited. Super excited and not even a tiny bit uncomfortable. Gosh, I would vote for these candidates as many times as I saw “Get Out,” as well as once for every mug or tote bag I own that says “The Future is Female” or “Love is Love” on it. (Imagine a lot of mugs and tote bags.) Were only that legal!
But you have to think about electability.
I just think people — again, not me, I’m on board, just … people — might not vote for this candidate. Because the candidate is a little, well, you know.
I mean, it doesn’t bother me. But think of people, other people, people maybe with trucks or something, people who aren’t as, well, enlightened as you and, of course, me. These benighted, backward people might not be ready to vote for … someone like this.
Look at the candidate and ask yourself this question. (You, of course, will vote for them, and so will I!) But would an average voter, whom I am picturing in suspenders, maybe, with a hat that makes a statement with which you and I might not wholeheartedly agree, and maybe even a T-shirt that says “FBI: Female Body Inspector” on it — is this average voter going to vote for them?
He might be economically anxious, this voter, if you know what I mean. Let’s just say that if this were a movie, Sam Rockwell would play him.
This is all I’m asking, electability-wise: Think of the average voter, who loves, probably, to sit at a diner and say things that personally I frown on. I am picturing some of the language he is using, and I am just cringing, like someone who has accidentally bitten into a piece of burrito with the aluminum foil still on it. If this voter were at my Thanksgiving, we would have words, definitely. Almost definitely.
I think sexism, racism and homophobia are just about the worst things going. I don’t have a single relevant bone, organ or cartilaginous area in my body. But, of course, some people, you know, do, and it pains me as much as I am sure it pains you when I tell you that the average voter I am picturing is very much invested in all these terrible phenomena.
A shame. But that is just how it is, at least in this specific scenario I have decided to picture.
I think we can safely state that this voter wants a certain kind of person. Someone with that je ne sais quoi, that reassuring quality some candidates possess, where he would be welcome at a Starbucks even if he just used the restroom and left without purchasing anything, could display a picture of his spouse at work and you would high-five him, could talk for as long as he wished without being interrupted, or could walk into the room and say, “I’m your doctor!” and you would not consider it a surprising twist. Just that ineffable thingness.
Me, personally, I don’t require any of that. I just ask you to imagine a person who does and vote based on the preferences of this person whom, yes, I might say, is a little bit sexist, just the tiniest bit racist and, well, not un-homophobic, with little slivers of other phobias grated over the top, like truffles.
I am just trying to imagine what this voter wants. You and I are not like him! (I am, of course, picturing a him.) Most of America, even, is not like him! Take heart in the majority of voters nationwide who were fine with a woman last time and a black man the time before. But the electoral college — which, by the way, I completely agree we should abolish — compels us to heed the preferences of (ugh!) these people.
I am very excited about all the candidates. I am not talking about me! I just want you to think about the democratically engaged monstrous cretin given to making sexist remarks in business settings who has spilled some red sauce on his shirtfront and is not wiping it, this troll, this baby, this jerk of whom I completely disapprove, whose hateful ideas chip away at my spirit a little more each day I contemplate them!
We should let him decide who the nominee is, that is all I am saying.
Read more from Alexandra Petri: