Warning: Reality Doesn’t Care

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His argument shocked me. I needed more time to think about it, so my response was weak. Maybe that was his intention. To knock me off my game. It worked, but for a very bad reason. I bet he’d like to take it back now, so pay close attention.

You, like me, probably know you’re not responsible for what anyone else does, and other people’s behavior doesn’t excuse your behavior. You agree with that, don’t you? For example, if your friend Mike jumped off a bridge, you wouldn’t do the same. And I bet your parents would have punished you in sixth grade if they caught you smoking even if all your friends smoked. Am I right?


My friend is a lifelong Republican who voted for the Republican candidate every year but one. This year, though, he’s thinking about going a different way even if doing so helps Hillary Clinton win. He freely admits that doing so means he’s helping more abortions happen, he’s helping to increase racial division in America, and he’s helping to flood Missouri with terrorist-infused refugee storms. He understands the consequences of his decision.

But he refuses to accept any responsibility for the consequences of his own action.

Instead of taking responsibility for his own actions, he says his decision to potentially support a criminal for president is somebody else’s fault. He blames everybody who voted for Donald Trump in the primaries.

My friend is a great guy and he understands the laws of accountability. That’s what knocked me off my game. I never expect to hear conservatives blame somebody else for their actions. But he’s emotionally charged, and his emotions are interfering with his thinking. This can happen to anyone. 

Most conservatives believe in personal responsibility, but even a few conservatives deny responsibility for their own actions when they don’t like the choice before them.

Here’s the thing: no matter what you think of Donald Trump, you have to deal with reality on reality’s terms. Reality doesn’t care what you wish had happened in the past. Reality simply is, and reality doesn’t let you undo the past.

The only thing you can control is what you do next. You have no control over what others do next. And you have no control over anything anyone did in the past, including you. You have very little control over what you do in a year. You have complete control over what you do next.

If you reluctantly vote for Trump and Trump loses, you can blame the primary voters for picking the wrong candidate. If you vote for anyone other than Trump and Trump loses, you can blame yourself for all the extra abortions that you helped perform. And you know it’s true, don’t you?

Or you can do like a lot of adolescents and blame other people for your actions. But you probably don’t want to live like that.

Also published on Medium.