Hoping, believing voters will heed their better instincts

Donald Trump gestures while speaking surrounded by people whose families were victims of illegal immigrants on July 10, 2015 while meeting with the press at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Beverly Hills, California, where some shared their stories of the loss of a loved one. The US business magnate Trump, who is running for president in the 2016 presidential elections, angered members of the Latino community with recent comments but says he will win the Latino vote. AFP PHOTO / FREDERIC J. BROWN        (Photo credit should read FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP/Getty Images)

I’ve been watching those polls. They alarm me.

The presidential campaign that was supposed to be a lock for Hillary Rodham Clinton has turned into something quite different. It’s becoming a nail-biter, as Donald J. Trump has closed the gap to within a whisker.

I worry for our country no matter who wins this election. Whether it’s the Democrat Clinton or the so-called Republican Trump, my concernĀ lies in the unrest that has been fomented by the GOP nominee.

Look, the choice doesn’t thrill me.Ā Trump’s rise in the public opinion surveys, though, suggestsĀ that Trump has tapped into something foreboding and grim. He keeps yapping about the “failure” of our national leadership. For the life of me, IĀ cannot fathom what in theĀ world he’s talking about.

Failure to do what? To stop the economic free-fall that was underway in 2009? ToĀ prevent a major terrorĀ attack on our soil while killing bad guys on the battlefield?

As IĀ have read and absorbed all the hideous statements that have poured out of Trump’s mouth since the day he declared his presidential candidacy, I keep asking myself: Do Americans really and truly want someone of this caliber serving as their head of state?

How does one truly endorse a political figure who:

— Says aĀ U.S. senator is a war hero only because he gotĀ captured by the enemy?

— Mocks a reporter’s physical disability?

— Says women should be punished for obtaining an abortion?

— Fails to disavow immediately the endorsement of a known hater, one-time Ku Klux Klan grand dragon/wizard David Duke?

— Proposes an unconstitutional banĀ on Muslims seeking to enter this country?

— Proposes to build a wall across our southern border and then demands that another sovereign nation pay for it?

— Says a distinguishedĀ American judge cannot preside over a case involving Trump University simply because his parents are Mexican immigrants.

— Denigrates the U.S. military as a “disgrace”?

— Says heĀ “knows more about ISIS than the generals, OK?”

— Changes his policy views hourly.

Stop me beforeĀ my fingers fall off typing these examples.

Yes, I know about the trust issues that plague Clinton’s campaign. I know about the concerns that many voters have that she’s not entirely transparent and truthful.

I wish Clinton would speak to us more candidly and answer the difficult questions that media representatives pose to her.

But given the choice that confronts us, my sincere hope is that Americans are going to realize the profound consequences this country faces by electing someone with zero understanding of the complexities of the office he is seeking.