Donald Trump, you do not represent me

Republican nominee ignorant of Conservative values

Adah Koivula

I once was a proud Republican. Now, the name makes me feel dirty. I don’t feel proud of it, because the party who nominated Donald Trump no longer represents my values.

The Republican Party originally attracted me because of its message of political and economic freedom. Our Founding Fathers believed in the “inalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” and the GOP was supposed to advocate for that. Republicans were supposed to stand for individual liberties and freedom from oppression.

I was a member of the GOP because I don’t believe in the government being the solution to every problem. I don’t believe in handouts or in suppression of my freedom of choice. I was attracted to Republican values because of the message of equal opportunity for economic growth, having respect for others values and personal space and about lifting people up.

But the Republican nominee doesn’t do that.

Those who call themselves Republicans and support Trump don’t understand what being a Republican means. The values the nominee has added to the party contradict its message. He oppresses people of color and pushes stereotypes of Latinos, Blacks and women.

He doesn’t understand foreign policy. He barely understands domestic policy and he lacks an overall Presidential demeanor. So, I refuse to call myself a Republican. I am a Conservative. I am right-of-center on a political spectrum. But, I am not a Republican because I refuse to support the nominee.

For those who have never met a Republican, they might think all Republicans are rich, old, white men or uneducated females “listening to what their daddy told them,” based on what you see on CNN from Donald Trump rallies. In the real world this is absolutely not true. Young conservatives like myself have been working to change how others see those who stand right-of-center politically.

Donald J. Trump will not work to change that stereotype. He and the other Trump Republicans do not promote equality. They do not advocate for a small government and they will not build a government of the people, by the people and for the people. Instead, they are willing to make exceptions to their values. They are willing to think of women and people of color as second class citizens and support a nominee who could be considered the most bigoted, sexist and crude man of all time.

This leaves most of my fellow Conservatives with a tough choice. What do you do when your nominee for president doesn’t support your values? What do you do when your party has seemingly abandoned everything it stands for? Where do you go from here?

Young conservatives don’t know what to do, but we aren’t going to just suck it up and support Donald Trump.

Many of my fellow young conservatives are going to focus our attention to the congressional races, to the state congressional races the places where we can check and balance our Federal branch. We are going to continue to speak out against Republicans, Donald Trump and injustice. The GOP is not our GOP anymore, but we are fighting to take it back.