There was a time politics made me groan and roll my eyes. It wasn’t something I was interested in, and it wasn’t something worth my time. I can honestly say I used to be an idiot. Voting is a privilege that every American enjoys. It is a responsibility everyone should take seriously at every opportunity…especially women.
Thankfully, I realized as a young adult the vast importance of the voting process, and I have been exorcizing my right since.
Whether we like it or not, politics touches the lives of every American citizen. It doesn’t matter if it’s a small touch or a large touch no American should consider it inconsequential. I’m not saying that they should make it the most important topic in their life. Most people do have more immediate concerns to occupy their minds. Yet, Americans should never rule out politics especially when they’re living through a critical time in American history.
This is our critical time.
As several speakers reiterated at the Democratic National Convention, we have seen the bottom drop out of our economy. From there it was a domino effect or free fall into a recession on the verge of a depression. It had all the devastated glory of an epic myth.
The crumbling, tarnished spire known as the failing “American Dream” began to fall into an oubliette of despair. From that bottomless fissure rose a party oozing with hate and venom that’s beyond deadly. They may or may not be the most radical faction that this country has ever seen. Yet, they are powerful, fueled by backers with more money than any one person or company should attain. That radical faction is known as the Tea Party.
Venom infiltrates a living body through injection and rapidly spreads throughout the system of the living organism for the express purpose to cause a painful death. The Tea Party embodies that in every possible way.
I attempted to watch the Republican National Convention. Surprisingly, I couldn’t watch a single speech for more than a few seconds without the alarming rise of bile traveling up my esophagus. Perhaps it was the chronic lying triggering my delicate gag reflex, the noxious flow of hatred wafting from my TV, or a combination of both. I know that an entity (i.e., person or party) that inspires such a negative reaction is not a party that I should trust with the future of my country.
In contrast was the Democratic National Convention. While I watched (and I didn’t turn the channel once), I was moved to tears and boundless inspiration. I feel the Democrats were able to connect with the American people on an emotionally positive scale while the Republicans attempted to connect through hate, anger, and fear. I imagine those are the attributes of a horrific dictator only interested in controlling a country for the express purpose of powerful greed.
I’m not going to sit here and wax poetic about the Democrats. Before 2010, I protested the illusory exclusivity of our elections.
Since the Democratic and Republican parties have monetary clout backing their political power plays, they can easily swamp the media and squash the chances of a new party’s bid for election. They take advantage of the laziness infesting the American people regarding politics since they neglect properly researching candidates.
Instead, Americans rely on TV, newspapers, and talk radio to inform them of their candidate choices, naively trusting those sources to adequately educate them on each candidate. What they neglect to realize is that political ads are essentially propaganda. Television news moguls can be bought. Talk radio hosts use their windbaggery to express their personal political views. Writers for print media infuse articles with literary bias.
Despite everything, there have been instances of Independents and possibly an obscure party or two winning a political office either local, state, or federal – my hero Rep. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) is one. Yet, the ballots are still dominated by Democrats and Republicans meaning they control government big and small.
My protest consisted of exercising my right to vote for a third party option. In all elections until this year, I voted for the Green Party. If a Green Party candidate wasn’t available, I looked for another party (NOT Libertarian *shudder in horror*) or I left that section blank. I knew the Green Party or any alternative wouldn’t win because most Americans are two party-centric. That means they’ll vote for a Democrat or a Republican and ignore the rest.
While I knew the futility of voting for a third party, I hoped that enough people would think like me to send a message to the two powerful parties: Think of Americans first and turn your back on the greed.
Unfortunately, my protest must wait for another election because I am forced to choose a side and go to metaphorical war.
Since I abhor pure, unadulterated hatred I feel that the Republicans have embraced with the Tea Party crazies, I chose the Democrats as my champions.
There are two big reasons among many why I was disgusted with the Democrats. While their ideals echoed the ideals that I hold dear, they continually frustrated me because they didn’t fight for those values. In my opinion and the opinion of most lefties, the Democrat federal officials were content to let the Republicans make fools of them like an annoyingly bratty kid takes advantage of a tired, haggard parent.
Meanwhile, on a state level, I was used to gangster Democratic officials favoring a certain lakeside city while ignoring most of the state. I live in the part they ignore.
In 2008, that’s how I viewed then Senator Barack Obama. I didn’t vote for him since I didn’t think he had my values at heart. Furthermore, I thought that he made too many promises he couldn’t possibly uphold. Even I could see that some of the damage done – even though I was ignorant of the extent of the damage – couldn’t be fixed in a measly four years.
America took more than a decade to overcome the Great Depression. It took a global war to get us out of the depression. This time a war almost created another depression. Logically, recovery from a recession in the 21st Century would certainly take more than four years.
I feel that candidates seeking election should not make outlandish promises. In my opinion, any promise they make is outlandish since American government is a group effort. What they should promise is to do their hardest to convince their fellow elected officials that achieving a consensus on certain policies is beneficial for the American people.
Now Republicans are targeting specific inalienable rights of the American people. They are insidiously and systematically stripping the reproductive rights of women, stripping the voting rights of American minorities, and denying the rights of immigrant children who are American citizens in their hearts and souls.
During these attacks Democrats are fighting back. I am confident that they will hold the Republicans accountable for their mendacious madness. Democrats are incensed on behalf of their constituents to the point of protest. I find that they are setting aside their acquiescent superfluous mentality to grow a backbone and live up to their potential.
As I watched the Democratic National Convention and listened to the speeches, I heard them promise to fight. That was a promise that I could accept. As President Obama delivered an incredible speech, I heard him promise to do his best and not make the impossible promise to move mountains. For three days, I shed tears of fierce hope that the President and several Democrats would win the election, that they would triumph over an obsequious party that secretly embraces the worst in humanity in the guise of Christian and Catholic zealotry.
The Democrats that represent my state pioneered 20th Century bureaucratic double-dealing. Yet, in this election, I will welcome them as my friends because my reproductive and voting rights are still intact and they make me feel protected from the chaos of the Republican states.
In the 2012 Presidential election, the enemy of my enemy is my friend.