Voting with a Living Conscience
Mitzi Dasheya Cowell
151

There are a lot of issues with the assumptions made in the background that precede this article — that I admit was well written and thoughtful, but misses the mark in my opinion.

The first is that voting third party (or write in) is a “protest vote” rather than a vote for a candidate people feel better represents their beliefs. It diminishes not just the candidate but the voters who feel left out by the mainstream choices, and what better way to alienate them further than to tell them their vote is trash — not in those terms but sugar coating it doesn’t make it anything different.

The second is that third party candidates are undoubtedly hurting Clinton, and there’s not a lot of basis for this. In fact, analysis indicates Johnson, the highest polling third party candidate, was pulling in voters unhappy with their party’s option from both parties at about an equal rate. A push. Stein was in fact hurting Clinton, but her polling is rather non-existent and that doesn’t even tell the full story. The popular vote doesn’t make the least bit of a difference, so Stein taking away from Clinton where she has huge leads (i.e. California for instance) doesn’t make the least bit of difference in the electoral college therefore Jill Stein has absolutely no effect on Clinton in reality.

The third is that those who are not going to vote for Clinton (or Trump either) are simply being stubborn and unwilling to compromise their ideals, as your father was with Pepito and originally with you as well when the two of you were sick. I hope you can see how those are not similar. But more importantly, maybe demanding more from our POTUS candidates is exactly what is necessary. Hillary may have dedicated her life to liberal agendas but it doesn’t mean jack if her methods are the exact same ones that have produced nothing of substance in decades. I could dedicate my entire life to fighting disease through herbal medicine but if herbal medicine is never going to work then my intent doesn’t make the least bit of difference.

That’s where I stand. Hillary’s idea are rooted in the most basic and rudimentary failures that have been recycled year in and year out for decades — with nothing to show for it. They clearly aren’t working, but somehow they will once she steps in? Capitalism has run its course in this country, at least for now, and it’s inarguable that capitalism breeds inequality (there’s literally no way around this) so what do you think implicit / explicit bias + Capitalism + 200+ years equals?

Not to mention that I personally believe Hillary acts in the best interest of herself first and foremost. One, I don’t believe altruism actually exists, but rather there is a sliding scale, or spectrum, of just how hedonistic we all are. So of course we all would fall on that scale, and I believe that Hillary is more worried about her “brand” than what is right — however that means they will sometimes align, coincidence more than purposeful. She tends to find herself on the right side of history just as the general public threshold crosses 50% — she fights for what is popular or she fights for what isn’t popular so long as it benefits her in some shape or form.

I can’t fault her too much for that, except that she is unwilling to tear down a system that helped build her into a powerful and rich woman. And it’s that very system that also has created systemic problems in this country — they’re hand in hand and she’s one of the biggest benefactors of that problem while millions others are getting shit on. How easy it is to decry poverty when you can make $200,000 in an hour by pandering to rich white men. I find her to be callous and calculating, as many do.

Therefore I won’t compromise my newly found ideals. You see, I used to be on the same side that is somehow uplifting Trump, it was before Trump thankfully but I saw the writing on the wall well before this election came to fruition. I slowly realized that Republicans blatantly lie through their teeth in regards to wanting smaller government. You can’t want smaller government yet ask for that same gov’t to regulate marriages, halt immigration entirely, and validate discriminatory practices on the basis of religion, among other things.

But I put up with their misguided (that’s what I thought then) social stances because I felt they had superior ideals when it came to economic principles and policies. I genuinely thought that people controlled their own destiny, I drank that koolaid, ignoring the privilege handed to me (that I was wasting, go figure). It was only after I received a job in corporate and watched the dirty underhanded politics that oppress and exploit the working class so that those at the top can benefit wildly. Warren Buffet talks a big game but I promise he doesn’t believe in it, it’s only so that he can sleep at night and ignore that his hoarding of billions is killing thousands, if not millions, every single year.

And Hillary will do nothing, absolutely NOTHING, to change that. The social issues are undoubtedly important, and her track record is very good in that regard, but she misses the mark widely in her economic ideology which is responsible for a wide variety of social inequalities that still exist in this country.

I won’t give up hope that the general public will go to the voting booth and remove fear from their hearts and vote with their conscious — but I’m not naive enough to believe that will happen. Anyone voting Hillary to stop Trump is voting for the wrong reasons, and vis-a-versa.

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