I’ve been travelling so haven’t had a chance to comment on the release of the tape Trump made in 2005. This relates to the bigger question of the role a person’s morality should play in the selection of candidates for public office.
Much of the fuss has to deal with some of the words he used. I find this just plain silly. We all use words in private that we wouldn’t wish the world to hear. Saying a particular word years ago should have no bearing on whether someone should become our next president. More concerning is him talking about pursuing an extramarital affair and bragging about groping women. I have known men who brag about cheating on their wife whether they actually do or not. Perhaps that was what Trump was doing. Given his history, it would not be surprising if he were telling the truth. He has been bringing up Bill Clinton’s past indiscretions but that doesn’t excuse his behavior.
Hillary Clinton has her own ethical issues. She has lied time and time again. When she is caught in a lie, she tells another lie. I don’t think she thinks in terms of honesty and dishonesty. She says whatever is politically expedient at the moment. Whether it is true or not is irrelevant.
There is a lot of hypocrisy in the outrage people have expressed. Much of it is politically motivated. Many who condemn Trump excuse both Clintons and vice versa.
So what do we do? In an ideal world our presidents would lead moral, upstanding lives. In my opinion, the ability to lead the country far more effectively is far more important. If being a good person made someone a good president, Jimmy Carter would be the greatest president in history. There is no evidence that Washington or Lincoln ever strayed. If they had, would anyone argue that we would have been better off without them?
Sadly, we are stuck with a choice between two deeply flawed people. We need to pick the one who will be the best president and ignore their personal failings.