The news that Donald Trump’s support is falling within his fortress of white males puts many of them in an awkward spot: how to abandon their leader while holding on to their pride. So here’s a 10-point guide to doing that very thing.
1. Don’t vote on November 8. This will be hard since you’ve likely poured your heart (and maybe your wallet) into supporting your candidate. Harder still if your spouse, poll captain or hunting buddies expect to see you there. In that case….
2. Vote on November 8th. It’s still a secret ballot, right? And what happens in the polling booth, stays in the …etc. So either deface your ballot or….
3. Vote for the Libertarian Candidate, Gary Johnson. After all, he was a two-term Republican governor, he did summit Mt. Everest, he’s a practicing Christian and he’s not a woman.
4. Hold your head high as you walk out of the voting booth. The best sign of being proud is walking proud. And when Trump’s poll watchers accost you on your way out, tell them “I voted 10 times today for Donald.”
But just because no one else knows you didn’t vote for Trump doesn’t mean you don’t. So here’s how to live with yourself when you look in the mirror on November 9th.
5. Stop watching FOX News. Your psyche needs reinforcement for new behaviours, not old. Two weeks before the election, start watching MSNBC and reading nytimes.com.
6. Start pulling back today. Don’t turn out for those next Trump rallies, church socials or NRA roundups. When a friend says: “I didn’t see you last night,” just say: “It was awesome!” And speaking of deflections……
7. Memorize your personal sound-bites: If you think you’re talking to a fellow traveller, start by saying: “Boy, he sure makes it hard.” If you get encouraging noises in return, say: “The crazier he talks, the crazier he makes me.” If that draws an agreeable grunt, you’re now free to say: “I was never really Trump. Just Trump-ish.” Very quickly, you’ll have made a new secret friend.
8. Start reconnecting with your college-educated children, mixed-race in-laws, and immigrant colleagues. They’ll show you there’s a big wide world out there.
9. Think when your kids made a huge mistake. Your daughter married the punk you hated on first sight; your son got in with the druggies at school. What did you do? You were angry for awhile, but you gave them a way back in, with their pride — and the family — intact. You did do that, right?
10. Have coffee with an alcoholic friend. One who’s no longer drinking. They’re old hands at betraying their family, friends and workmates — and at making amends to all of them.
So if none of these tips work and you blurt out at Christmas dinner that you didn’t vote for Trump, you’ll have a friend who can guide you back into your family’s good graces. But this won’t happen right away. Trust has to be earned. Just ask Mr. Trump.