Trump

President Donald Trump stands during a Presidential Medal of Freedom ceremony for auto racing great Roger Penske in the Oval Office of the White House, Thursday, Oct. 24, 2019, in Washington.

Although I am a longtime Independent and oppose the use of labels or identity politics, I favor several things that are sometimes described as "liberal":

Peace. A clean environment. Better wages, and better health care and education.

I also favor some things that are usually described as "conservative":

National security, including at the borders. A strong economy, with jobs for all. Respect for our veterans. Commonsense practices with regard to late-term abortions. And respect for law enforcement, as long as it is applied fairly.

Although an Independent, I have many friends who are either moderate or conservative in their views. I find the vast majority of them to be patriotic Americans, good citizens, and decent, hard-working people who are trying just as hard to make sense out of everything as anyone else is. This message is to my friends who are planning to support President Donald Trump in the next election:

I respect the office of president, and, I respect the results of the last election, flawed though it was. Despite Congress spending millions of dollars, and countless hours of the time we all pay them for, nothing was ever found to overturn the election. Therefore, it has to stand.

And, both purposely and by accident, Trump has performed valuable service to our nation, specifically in this case, by opening a can of worms that has long needed to be opened. Whether he intended to or not, he has become a lightning rod for many things which needed to be fully aired, and hopefully resolved, concerning both the past mistakes and misdeeds of our government, and the incompetence and juvenile, hyper-partisan "party before country" mentality of many, perhaps even most, who currently serve both in Congress and in our multitude of bureaucracies.

The problem is, in some respects, that can also be said of the president himself, without question. So, I ask you, do you in your heart and mind truly believe that, if he were to win reelection, things would somehow magically be any better in the next four years? I do not see how any rational person could come to that conclusion, in all honesty. I think it could actually get worse, as the partisan disease being so pathetically displayed in Congress spreads even deeper into our nation as a whole.

That is a very, very dangerous and bad thing for America, and for each one of us, and more importantly, for our children and grandchildren.

So, as an Independent who loves my country, I see only one sensible option, only one worthy candidate on the political stage at this moment, who wants to heal the divide, listen to all sides, and help us sustain our democracy for all parties and all citizens: Tulsi Gabbard.

She is qualified to be commander-in-chief. She wants to immediately seek peace with our adversaries, while maintaining our position of unassailable defense, in order to bring both some of our long-deployed troops, and some of our long wasted money, back home. We need to remove the nuclear threat hanging over our kid's heads, and she has made that her No. 1 priority.

See for yourself.

Ed Billeaud

retired

Arnaudville