We need Bernie Sanders

by Irvine Welsh

Irvine Welsh and I are probably as dissimilar as two writers can be, but we became friends on Twitter anyway, where I take discreet delight in his Scottish cuss words. When we approached him about joining Writers for Bernie, he confessed that, although he’s married to a U.S. citizen and pays taxes, as a resident alien he’s not allowed to vote in presidential elections. (I said he should get a discount on his taxes, then. He said he keeps telling them that.) Given that he has skin in the game, we decided that it would be entirely fair for him to weigh in on Bernie. — Holly LeCraw

Democracy is a beautiful but fragile beast, and there’s an almost universal contention that ours has been heavily compromised, to the point of negation, by big money and corporate interests. Restoring it to good health is crucial, as continued leadership by and for elites will do nothing to protect citizens from the big external shocks -demographic, climatic and financial- that are heading our way.

All the other candidates simply offer more of the same. Whether you are talking about a suited mullah, a blustering game-playing clown, or a ferociously ambitious carpetbagger, all share the identical overwhelming stink of entitled, egotistical pomposity and privilege. We desperately need somebody who doesn’t believe that it’s all about them and their personal legacy, and who is driven by that mission to empower citizens through mending our democracy. If we don’t find such a person, then the assets of people in the USA will continue to be transferred to the 1% in exchange for increasingly devastating debt.

Bernie Sanders is the only candidate who fits that description.

Irvine Welsh is the author of Trainspotting, Ecstasy, Glue, Porno, Filth, Marabou Stork Nightmares, The Acid House, If You Liked School, You’ll Love Work, The Bedroom Secrets of the Master Chefs and Reheated Cabbage. He divides his time between Florida, Ireland, and Scotland.