Letter to the Editor
I grew up a Roosevelt Democrat, a political heritage from my family who lived through the Great Depression. I eventually shed that heritage when I saw that while the Democrats tilted some towards working people, in the end the deck was still stacked against my class. They were part of two sides of the same coin, along with the Republicans.
In this election cycle we, the people, still haven’t spoken when it comes to the presidential race. In all the primaries and caucuses, only 12% of the eligible voters actually voted. But “they” have already decided who is going to be your next president. And yet “they” mock the minority party candidates—Libertarian and Green– who rank 10% and 5%, respectively, in the polls, mainly because they do not have the “big bucks” to tell you what they stand for. You might agree; you might not. Yet every election cycle we are told, ad nauseum, to get on board and vote for the “lesser of two evils”.
They send our youth to die for corporate America in foreign adventures from Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan, while propping up dictatorial regimes until their own people overthrow them.
The two parties talk about “free enterprise” and yet, when the big corporations—from banks to auto manufacturers– double over on the verge of failing, who is there to bail them out with our tax dollars? Those two sides of the same coin.
It seems we have billions to bail out corporate America and trillions for wars, but when it comes to funding the social needs of the majority of our people, the millionaires’ club—Senate and House members—pontificate, hesitate, and debate and maybe, maybe find a few million if enough political pressure Is placed upon them. Are you kidding me? They have had no problem finding a trillion for the Afghanistan debacle in the last ten years, and no end in sight.
It would appear I am not alone in questioning our antiquated, so-called two-party system. Voters across the nation have spoken out to enable the Green Party to get on the ballot in over 30 states thus far, while seeking status in 15 others.
The freedoms we have accomplished in our nation weren’t accomplished overnight. It came through long-hard struggle. Abolition of slavery; child labor laws; women’s right to vote; unions’ right to organize; civil rights legislation.
The proponents of those struggles and others lost more battles than they won early on. But they won eventually, because they were right! And they did not give up.
Therefore, Jill Stein for President is going to win– at least my vote—because of what she stands for. It’s not important that she will “lose” this election, because I’d rather vote for what I believe in and “lose,” than vote for what I don’t believe in and “win.”
So think about stepping away from the herd and standing up for yourself and those future generations of Americans awaiting our decisions. I want them to know I voted and struggled for a better, more humane society than the Republicans or Democrats could ever produce.
As Henry David Thoreau told us: “If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music he hears, however measured or far away.”
The struggle is endless, but engaging in it is what makes us human. And the beat goes on.
— Lawrence H. Geller