I’ll cut right to the chase: I am among those who will definitely be voting for Joe Biden in November. I know that doing so likely places me in a distinct minority in this area. That’s fine, so be it.

There are numerous reasons behind my vote choice, but I’ll sum it up in one word: grandchildren. My grandchildren — and yours — will live with the results of this pivotal election much longer than we will. And I see those results being much, much better for our nation’s fiber and future if Joe Biden, not Donald Trump, is standing on the inaugural platform come January.

I realize hard-core Trump supporters will dismiss anything I say here (with one exception, which I’ll get to later). But I do hope that the minority of voters who may still be in the “undecided” camp will ponder and favor the prospect of a Biden presidency versus four more years of Trump. Is Biden perfect? Of course not. But in my mind, he stands far above Trump in those hugely important categories of integrity, compassion and competence. 

Just one recent — and, unfortunately, not surprising — example. On Sept. 12, while campaigning in Nevada, Trump declared: “Now I can be really vicious.” His declaration was in response to a Democratic ad about his reported comments disparaging dead American soldiers. The Nevada crowd roared its approval.

How does that sort of rhetoric lift us up, make us better? Is this the best we can do for leadership? Have we as a nation become so divided, so mean-spirited toward fellow citizens — including those who may not look like us or think in lockstep with us — that we’d rather have four more years of the Narcissistic Divider in Chief in the White House? 

I truly hope that is not the case, and I know tens of millions of other Americans concur. 

I encourage Biden supporters — whether strong or lukewarm — to vote in this election (just one time, not twice) and to ask their family and friends with similar views to do the same. And I encourage those still in the “undecided” camp to come out for Biden. Our democracy needs a huge breath of fresh air right now, and he will work with others to open the door and let it in. Our grandchildren will be the ultimate beneficiaries.

Yes, the grandchildren. We all want what is best for them: the opportunity to live and prosper peacefully in an environment that is healthy for both body and soul. I believe that’s one priority on which we can all agree, whether we oppose Trump or support him. Let’s reject the meanness and divisiveness that stand in its way, and instead move toward an American ship of state where, when the boat rises, we all are elevated.

Don Lilleboe 

Pelican Rapids