I have been reflecting on how little I was aware of what was going on in presidential elections when I was still living among the Amish. Sometimes I almost wish I could tune out this election the way I used to then.
Then I discovered the story about Amish PAC. I realized that wishing myself back among the Amish might not shield me from this election after all. It seems no one is spared from becoming entangled in this election — not even the Amish.
I have been more engaged in this election season than I’ve ever been in my life. I read nearly everything I can lay my hands on — though I have to cringe when I read the next crazy thing Donald Trump is being quoted on. I’ve never seen an election season with so many twists and turns in the road. It seems we are all collectively holding our breath to find out how this story will end. I, for one, just cannot accept that voters will be forced to choose between Clinton and Trump in November because I cannot vote for either of them. I will vote out of a sense of hope, but I refuse to vote out of a sense of fear. I don’t know where that leaves me, so I will have to wait and see how this plays itself out.
Perhaps I am being very Amish about this, but when I heard that Hillary said there is no way she won’t be the nominee, the hair stood up on the back of my neck. I said to David, “They also said the Titanic was unsinkable. Hillary is in no position to be tempting fate. Things usually don’t turn out well for those who do.”
It’s true. There is so much that can happen between now and July 25. We all fault Trump for being arrogant and full of bluster, but how much more arrogant can a person get than to claim he or she knows for certain what will happen in the future?
But I digress….
I felt like Donald Kraybill’s remarks in this article were a fair assessment of the Amish voting trends and how they may view Donald Trump. We have to wait for the end of this story, too. How ironic would it be if the Amish tipped the scales in this awful, sordid affair we call the presidential election? That would be just too weird for words.
What do you think? Is Trump being really smart or really brash in going after the Amish vote? Do you think he will succeed in getting a large number of them to vote for him?
26 thoughts on “Donald Trump and the Amish”
Sorry, I am totally out of this election. I don’t keep up with any of it. I guess I am real Amish.
Katie, good for you. I wish I could be “real Amish” with you… Ha!
I hope you are doing well.
I feel frustrated like you do. No one left worth voting for. But do you really believe the Amish can be persuaded to vote enmass?
Hi Aleta. I don’t know if the Amish will vote enmass. They normally do things as a group, so a few influential men in each community could persuade quite a few others. But Trump and all that he stands for (which changes from day-to-day) is so antithetical to the Amish beliefs that I think Donald Kraybill is right that they are not going to vote for him as many of them did for Bush. Only time will tell.
I always said that this country would be better off if a woman would be president. But, I am not voting for Hilary. At first, I thought Trump would give everyone a good run for their money, which he did, but in my heart I cannot say that he is “President Material”. He may have some good points, but his “demeanor” leaves a little to be desired. I keep trying to picture him dealing “diplomatically” with other countries such as North Korea, Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, etc.
I lost interest in elections when they started to only include the Dems. and Reps. in presidential debates. Years ago, they also included the Independents and any other parties that were running. They no longer do that and I don’t think it’s fair. I remember voting for Ross Perot. Anyone I ever vote for never gets elected! And I think the electoral college should be ended. Its former purpose is void today. I also think that the lobbyists and big banks “control” the government to a point. I don’t envy the kids of today – they are the ones who will either live with this mess or have to change it somehow. The last Primary election I went to, the lady asked me “Rep. or Dem.?” I replied “Neither” and she told me I couldn’t do that. I replied “We have OTHER PARTIES running.”
Crazy – but I never really thought about the Amish voting seeing as how they are passivists. Years ago I read a book called “Josiah for President” by Martha Bolton. It’s the story of an Amish man who has a sincere heart and is so well liked that he winds up somehow running for President of the United States and wins. They have the electric shut off in the Executive suite and have the grounds plowed for a garden and stables built for farm animals. Oh how I cried at the end!! The book may be fiction . . .but somehow I wish it wasn’t. If only the real people running today could have Josiah’s heart and way of looking at things this would be a totally different election!
One good thing – we have been without a TV since January and we can honestly say we don’t miss it. Now, we don’t have to listen to all the Presidential ads and garbage! I have to admit that I do miss the tornado warnings and some of the PBS programs. But we have the internet and I feel I’m learning many new and useful things with the internet that I wouldn’t have known about with TV.
Well Saloma, I hope you got a good laugh today reading this.
Kris, I agree with you about having more than two parties. Both of them are so corrupt that I think we have to start over to get something along the lines of what the people want.
What a story — Josiah for President. It is definitely fiction! Not only would an Amish man not run for president, but the government would never allow the White House and grounds to be used the way you describe. The Democratic Party won’t even nominate someone like Bernie Sanders. He is an honest man, even if one doesn’t agree with all his policies.
We don’t have a working television either. I read everything online. Now if I wasn’t connected to the Internet, maybe I could tune out this election and wait to see how it turns out on its own.
I find it astonishing that people seem to be warming to Trump. From over here he seems like something out of Mad Magazine.
From here he looks like that as well. What a train wreck this election is!
I have nothing to vote, because we are not American. My husband follows it, he really likes that. But what I get is that it is like a disaster.
Hopefully everything works out.
There is only one way: Ask the Lord for His way and wisdom. But that is just the problem I guess, we do not need Him. Only in times of trouble instead of every day,moment.
Believe me, we do need God to intervene. I pray every day that somehow we end up with a good and honest leader who will find peaceful solutions and not someone who will lead us into war and destruction.
but it looks like that we have a government who can live, deal without God!
I think, we have as Christians we have to speak up more and more.
The Amish churches in our county in Indiana do not allow their members to vote. Some wish they could, others are glad they can’t.
In what areas are they allowed to???
Sharon, I’m not sure that I can speak for all Amish communities, but I know that Trump is targeting Holmes County and Lancaster County. In my home community (Geauga County, Ohio) it wasn’t forbidden to vote, but it just wasn’t done. Sometimes the unwritten rules are the most binding ones, because many Amish don’t question these traditions. However, if some of the men did vote, they might just have kept it quiet and I would not have known about it.
I was not aware that the Amish in Indiana are not allowed to vote. Are you in the county where the Swiss Amish live? It would not surprise me that they would forbid it, since they tend to be stricter than the mainstream Old Order Amish. I would be very surprised if the Amish in the Goshen area would forbid it. But then again, I don’t know much about the Amish there, just that they tend to be somewhat less strict than most Amish communities.
Sorry I cannot give a more definitive answer.
Yes, I live in Adams County which is where the Swiss Amish are. The ones in the northern part of the county are somewhat more liberal, but the ones in the south are the most conservative of all the Amish in the U.S. The ones in the Goshen area and Lagrange area may be able to vote since they are very liberal in most other things. My friend who works at the courthouse has told me that no Amish in this county vote. It seems sad to me that they live in a free country but really they are not free.
I believe they are free because they trust God way more than the voting masses (as I do)
I am from Mennonite County in Ontario Canada and here you will NOT see any horse and buggy Mennonites/Amish voting or any of the Black Car (Markham-Waterloo Mennonite Conference) Mennonites. I could but I think it is a simular situation in PA. From what I recall the black car Mennonites (Horning Group) and all the Horse and Buggy Mennonites do NOT vote either. Saloma would know better than me re; Amish in USA voting but I would bet literally non of the Horse and Buggy Amish would vote…
Frankly I was raised Old Order Mennonite but the reason I do not vote is because it does not matter who you vote for…it would make no difference because all politicians with power are controlled by those who we did NOT pick…both sides are always financed and controlled by the very same people/corporations that have run everything of importance in both the United States and Canada. There is however a real opportunity for mankind nowadays because at a minimum the TRUTH is starting to be exposed to the masses.
I can not remember a time where I was so totally discouraged and actually embarrassed by my government as I am today. I think both Trump and Clinton have lost all perspective. Do either of them even remember why they wanted to be president in the first place? They seem only to be fueled by wanting to beat the other. The whole thing is just sad. Prayer and asking God’s forgiveness for our foolishness is the only thing that’s going to save this country. I agree with Donald Kraybill, its not going to be the Amish vote. I find it hard to believe that the Amish would even consider voting for anyone who doesn’t seem to have any Christians values, which from what I have seen and read neither Clinton or Trump do.
I actually go back and forth between believing that the Amish will not vote for Trump, to remembering how easy it is to convince the group if a well-regarded person goes on a crusade to convince others. Because of the propensity for “groupthink” some Amish can be gullible and easily snookered. But I hope you are right, that they will recognize that Trump does not deserve their vote. Only time will tell.
Amish traditions have a few advantages. Imagine **not** being exposed to The Talking Orangutan 24/7 on TV, radio and computer.
They do, indeed. Though it seems they are not exactly immune, either.
Have you heard about Trump’s new campaign manager? He sounds like a scary dude. Perhaps even scarier than Trump (if that’s possible). Here is a link to the story: http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/apr/27/paul-manafort-donald-trump-campaign-past-clients
God help us! I keep praying for help, cause we sure do need it!
Sorry, I just realized Paul Manafort has been the chair of Trump’s campaign since March, and that I included a different link than I meant to. Here is the one I meant to leave: http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/may/31/donald-trump-paul-manafort-riva-levinson-book?utm_source=esp&utm_medium=Email&utm_campaign=GU+Today+USA+-+morning+briefing+2016&utm_term=174949&subid=18796763&CMP=ema_a-morning-briefing_b-morning-briefing_c-US_d-1
Pennsylvania, normally a “blue” state in national elections, went for Trump in a big way in the primaries. And evidently the polls are close between Trump and Clinton there now. A potential group of new voters could help swing things to Trump. If that were to happen, I would be so discouraged. The biggest predictor of support for Trump is people who score high on authoritarianism. One of the ways pollsters determine authoritarianism is in child-raising philosophy. Do you want your child to be respectful and obedient above all? Or do you want to encourage creativity and individual initiative?
The best thing I’ve read about the elections today is this article: http://www.rawstory.com/2016/05/robert-reich-its-time-for-clinton-and-sanders-supporters-to-swallow-some-tough-medicine/
Trump is a danger to democracy, to the Bill of Rights and to a way of life we take for granted and assume will always be ours. I have never said that about a Republican candidate before. This time is different.
Shirley, I keep going back and forth between believing that the Amish will not deliver for Trump to being afraid they will.
I read that article by Robert Reich. I have enormous respect for him, but he does not address the concern that Hillary is unlikely to win against Trump. We have been underestimating Trump for too long. And it has been at our own peril. I would like to think that a stronger candidate than Hillary will go up against Trump. Perhaps Joe Biden stepping in will be the answer… I keep hearing rumors that this will be happening.
We need divine intervention. I keep praying that God will guide us in choosing a leader who will seek peaceful solutions to the issues we face as a human family.
In my lowly opinion, there’s no way I can possibly vote for either one-Donny or Hilly; not in good conscience. We should have the option to have a “write-in vote”. It appears to me that once again God will allow, by His Providence, for this country to have what IT wants, instead of what IT needs.
God tells us in His word that the world will wax worse and worse. True born-again Christians must stand in the Lord and the power of His might as we face the way in which the world continues to go. We must remember that this world is not our ultimate home, but we must the best we can while here, looking to the Lord, believing on and trusting Him, for the glory of God and for our good. Blessings, Carol
Hello Saloma; I have listened to your older interviews with great interest as could tell by the very first interview that you “spoke my language” I just posed my last blog on my own site a few hours ago re; Who are the REAL Mennonites…check it out and let me know your thoughts.
RE: Red vs. Blue and Black vs White and Male vs Female ETC.
Personally as a fellow pilgrim and TRUTH SEEKER I must confess that when I became aware of who? is running the world and how? I wholeheartedly agree with you in many ways…it is much better to stay focused on our Mennonite problems from a macro perspective because it is better to be on the side of Jesus and of course GOD, than ANY other alternative.
Our modern world is corrupted by satan, and as the Bible clarifies most people are on the “broad road” so of course due to free-will, there are huge problems in this world. “Political Correctness” is a scam (a Control Theory) . Our worldly leaders are a direct result of this democracy. What is even more bothersome is the illusion many accept, that we can freely vote for anything our heart desires when the ONLY options we are given are; crap or crapolla. The “Cloward and Piven Theory” is used by those in power to create worldly division and when the foolish ones cry out for worldly solutions…these demons already have a solution just waiting in the wings!
Yes we must “wake up” to the TRUTH. We must accept Jesus Christ and follow him ABOVE all else!
Hi, Saloma. It has been awhile since I’ve posted… life has run away with me! My husband is now a “transitional” pastor of a church (2 years now but should be bringing on a younger man part-time, then full-time so as to work himself out of a job, as is the plan!), I’m teaching Sunday School there while still being a deaconess and Bible School teacher in our “old” church (where we still have membership.) I haven’t had as much time with my online friends and, happily, haven’t paid a lot of attention to the presidential blah blah of late.
Oh, and I want to be “real Amish” with you and Katie! But I don’t think my German heritage qualifies… close, but not quite :-) My 3x great grandmother was widowed onboard ship and then settled in Penn Territory on the east side of the Delaware River instead of the West Side. I don’t know where in Germany they were from or even her maiden name. Still gleaning some things from old records and stories.
I honestly don’t know what I’m going to do on election day. I don’t trust either candidate and feel it could actually be sinful for me to vote for either, as well. I’ll be praying about this, to be sure!
Good to catch up with you!
Remembered this blog post when I cut thru Kidron Oh on my way back to Saint Louis.(I li love the farm land and a respite from living in the city.) There were Trump signs in almost every yard-but not in those that were clearly Amish. Someone has been promoting Trump in that area. Quite a contrast from here , where there are very few signs for anyone. (People seem to be keeping their opinions to themselves)