A small movement — initially dismissed with contempt — has now acquired impressive momentum: the drive to have the Electoral College thwart the dangerous presidency of Donald Trump. Millions are now involved; the strategy has been covered in the national media; and the goal, however unlikely, is not impossible. Democrats have learned a brutal lesson in statistical odds, and success here seems hardly less probable than the election of a man like Donald Trump.
Now that candidates can run respectably on a platform of torture, how long before we see a frontrunner advocating slavery? Surely everything’s open for reconsideration. It’s time to retire an inconvenient prejudice: that America’s progress should be in a forward direction.
Of all the candidates at the Republican debates — including that putative beacon of sanity, Mitt Romney — only Jon Huntsman and Ron Paul had the base-level decency to renounce waterboarding: a practice that has been considered a particularly extreme form of torture since the Spanish Inquisition.