Citizens have to vote, send a clear message
Many citizens view both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump as appallingly bad choices for president, but believe there are no other viable candidates right now. We don’t have to simply accept this. Political parties and candidates ignore voters who do not demand action, and the choices keep getting worse.
The two-party system has let us down, due in part to the overwhelming number of Americans who choose to avoid political involvement instead of taking action. Helplessness and frustration result in low voter turnout, and we have seen the result. Many of us are so disgusted by the election process that we simply ignore it, or refuse to engage. That needs to change.
This year, every disgusted citizen should register to vote and send a message. Those on the left should go Green, voting for Jill Stein. People on the right should consider casting their vote for Gary Johnson, the Libertarian. Sure, neither will win. But we won’t have lost anything. If you can’t support either of these folks, write in your preferred future president. But vote!
If you don’t go to the polls, it tells the political class that you are not paying attention, or do not care about the future of this country. Registration is easy, and can be done online in a few minutes at the Board of Elections website. If you simply cannot make it to the polling places, request an absentee ballot.
Voting in state and local political races is even more important, and provides an even better chance to have our voices heard. We need to replace as many members of Congress as possible this cycle, and work for the future. This is still a democracy, and we can do better!
Yvonne Downes, Ph.D.