NEW HAVEN – Based on an amateur understanding of philosophy, a significant number of young American voters plan to sit out the 2016 election and watch with faint, self-righteous grins on their faces as Donald Trump overtakes Hillary Clinton and leads humanity into the fires of hell. Tim McCormick, an undergraduate student of philosophy at Yale, is leading the movement.
“We’re presented with two evils,” McCormick said. “On the one hand, we’ve got Clinton, who was careless in her usage of a private email server; and on the other hand, we’ve got Trump, who set up a fake university to steal vulnerable people’s money and who also advocates murdering the families of enemy combatants. I mean, how do you even begin to go about comparing two such categorically awful people?”
When pressed, however, McCormick admits that Clinton is indeed a better choice than Trump, “in much the same way that infinity is bigger than zero.” But whereas most people with a functioning prefrontal cortex might say that this is sufficient justification for supporting Clinton, McCormick argues that abstention is the morally right course of action in the present election. The reasoning behind his decision is somewhat technical.
“Any fart-brain who’s ever read a textbook on Postmodern Deontological Virtue Ethics,” McCormick said, “knows that when you’re faced with a choice between two absolute negatives consisting of disparate Platonic essences, all conceivable moral metrics are rendered inapplicable, and the only ethically tenable option is to refrain from making a selection. Inaction is simply the best way to proceed without sacrificing one’s principles.”
In layman’s terms, what McCormick is saying is that it’s best to dig in one’s heels and refuse to compromise, regardless of the cost—even if the fate of humanity itself is on the line. Or maybe what he’s saying is that since both sides are so vile, they deserve to be left to their own devices. Or . . . Actually, who the hell knows what McCormick is saying? The only thing that’s certain is that when the world goes down in flames, he’ll die content in the knowledge that he never surrendered the moral high ground.
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