This has been a very stressful time for political junkies like me. My conservative friends have been aghast watching the Republican Party devolve into civil war. They have found themselves facing the awful thought they’ll need to either vote for Donald Trump or defect from the party.
And they can’t stand the thought of voting for Hillary.
And my progressive liberal friends have been disheartened to see Bernie Sanders come So. Close. and yet fail (in the absence of a miracle) to get the nomination. Now we are faced with the same distasteful choice. Vote for Hillary or defect from the party.
In my world, this has lead to a lot of arguing and quite a bit of bitterness.
“If you don’t vote for Hillary, you are voting for Trump!”
“If you vote third party, you are wasting your vote!”
And on and on. I get it. I do. I profoundly fear living in a country lead by an egomaniacal, power hungry, delusional tyrant.
But after a LOT of thinking, soul searching and historical research, I am convinced that I just cannot vote for either candidate. I want to try to explain why.
“However [political parties] may now and then answer popular ends, they are likely in the course of time and things, to become potent engines, by which cunning, ambitious, and unprincipled men will be enabled to subvert the power of the people and to usurp for themselves the reins of government, destroying afterwards the very engines which have lifted them to unjust dominion.”
So political parties could allow greedy, power hungry people to take over the democratic process and use it for their own power? Huh.
And John Adams said this in 1789:
“There is nothing which I dread so much as a division of the republic into two great parties, each arranged under its leader, and concerting measures in opposition to each other. This, in my humble apprehension, is to be dreaded as the greatest political evil under our Constitution.”
I humbly agree. Two parties in opposition to each other means total gridlock, constant swings back and forth, no compromise. Which describes our government perfectly.
So why aren’t they in the news? Why haven’t you seen Gov. Gary Johnson on CNN? Why hasn’t Dr. Jill Stein been on Meet the Press?
And why haven’t they been at even one televised debate?
Here is my second reason for not voting either D or R. These smart, capable, sane candidates are not being heard because the two parties are owned and operated by Big Money. And Big Money wants to keep its Big Profits.
There is an election debate commission that is dominated by Democrat and Republican leaders. THEY decide who gets on the debate stage.
And here is my third reason. The media and the two parties are completely enmeshed and intertwined. You can find stories about huge media company donations to Clinton on conservative sites and you can find the same about donations to the GOP on liberal sites.
I went to the site “OpenSecrets,” which I highly recommend. It exposes the donations made to all candidates by all donors. There are a whole bunch of articles about the ties between media and the two big parties.
So here I am. Faced with pressure from the left to vote for the Democrat. Faced with the fact that I truly fear a Trump Presidency.
But also faced with the fact that as long as I continue to play the game with the two corrupt parties, I am part of the corruption. As long as I refuse to stand up and say “Enough!” and cast my vote for the person I believe will be best for the country, I am part of the problem.
I wish that the millions of people who plan to “hold their nose” and vote R or D would join me in choosing a third option.
We do NOT have to be stuck in this corrupt system. But we have to work together to take the process back.
John Adams would thank us.