I’m voting third party. Definitively.
I hate politics. I’ve always hated politics. I remember in elementary school watching the campaign ads on tv, and thinking, “Why can’t everyone just be nice to each other? Why does everyone have to say mean things?” I liked whichever candidate my parents liked, I thought my parents were right about everything. (The naivete of youth, right?) I was surprised when I went to school and some of the other kids in my class told me they would vote for the other candidate (because that’s what their parents were going to do). Some kids were more vocal about disagreements, saying, “You’re dumb,” when they found someone who preferred the opposing candidate. Let’s just say I don’t think anything has gotten better since then.
It’s safe to say I’ve been disenfranchised for a long time. I lost all remaining interest in politics when I was surrounded in a school environment that vocally posed opposing beliefs to what I heard at home. That’s not to say there’s anything wrong with dissenting opinions; it’s that both parties are aggressively adamant that they’re in the right. There’s never a discussion, it’s always a “let’s get all up in our arms about this” blood battle.
I do have beliefs, and admittedly, they are more closely aligned with one party over the other. But the corruption is a turn-off (from all parties). The ineffectiveness is a turn-off. The whole top-down-mandated-orders thing is the biggest turn-off. I don’t think most politicians really know what they’re talking about, since they’re talking about things that are outside of their personal experiences and expertise. So I don’t like them. Sorry not sorry, I’m biased. Collectively I don’t think politicians have a great track record. I think you’d have to be pretty full of yourself to want to be a politician, since it’s basically a glorified popularity contest. I’m not interested.
I’m not wild about voting. I like Bernie Sanders, but after seeing how that panned out, I can say the political landscape now seems more dismal to me than before. There was recently a post on how Sanders was encouraging his supporters to not vote third party. I didn’t read it because I refuse to vote for either of the dominant political parties this upcoming election, but I assumed the contents were about having to band together and support the party for the common good. Fortunately, I don’t have any party loyalty to worry about (I’ve been registered as independent since I was 18). The real issue is that purporting the idea that voting third party is “wasting your vote” is a self-fulfilling prophecy. If everyone that was disenfranchised or simply did not like their party’s candidate actually voted third party, then it wouldn’t be seen as such a joke.
I’ll be voting based on my principles, and will NOT vote for someone I wouldn’t want to see as president, even if it means “letting the other side win.” After all,it’s not about winning or losing, but how you play the game. You shouldn’t have to compromise your ideals to vote for a candidate you want in office. I won’t accept a wishy-washy #iguessimwither as my decision. A third party vote may not hold much weight, but I refuse to waste it on someone I can’t trust or support whole-heartedly. So there you go.