A trepidatious choice: a man who did nothing vs. one who knew nothing at all…

Marcus K. Dowling
10 min readSep 10, 2020
Photo via The Intercept

Neither candidate in the race for America’s Presidency has consistently demonstrated the talents to run a democratic society in the throes of a destructive viral pandemic, alongside terrifying fascist and racist unrest, plus a general national existential malaise. Thus, like a high school chemistry student, I’m paralyzed in intrigue by wanting first to see just how far our nation metaphorically centrifuges itself before reaching the peak of resolute separation. When, not if that occurs before November 3, it’ll crystallize my fear in voting for one of two woefully inadequate choices to solve a country at the precipice of feels and seems like slow, terminal decay.

To me, the 2020 American Presidential election ultimately boils down, on one level, to a debate of the lack of merits of the logic of Socrates versus that of Edmund Burke. If you believe — like Socrates — that accepting ignorance punches one’s ticket to the palace of wisdom, you’re a supporter of incumbent Donald J. Trump. However, if you’re aware — like Burke — that evil prevails when good men do nothing, you’re desperately hoping that merely by existing as a secondary choice, Joe Biden has already done enough to become the 46th President of the United States.

Neither of these nations allows for the barest modicum of trust to exist that either Trump or Biden can successfully solve for America at-present.

However, it may be the Bible’s Book of Ecclesiastes 9:11 that sums up this race best. “The race is not to the swift or the battle to the strong, nor does food come to the wise or wealth to the brilliant or favor to the learned; but time and chance happen to them all.” In Biden, a man represents a time now long forgotten. Trump, a man willing to gamble on chance. Sadly, because injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere, in America, we have no time left for one last hurrah for conservative liberalism. Moreover, when COVID’s odds give me a 3% chance of dying, that’s not a bet I’m willing to take.

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