We’ve all heard the scoffs at undecided voters – and I have to agree with most of the criticisms I’ve heard so far. If you’re undecided at this point, you’re probably not very interested in politics or you just haven’t been paying much attention. And you mostly likely weren’t watching any of the recent debates.
Yes, I watched all three debates. Well, four if you count the VP. And I hated just about every minute of them – the tension, the obvious strategies, the meaningless numbers and statistics, the lies, the body language, the disagreement. It all seems like some warped sporting event, except it’s guys in suits with calculated facial expressions. And the score is pretty subjective, depending on what color you’re wearing.
These debates were a bit of a problem for me. Why? Because watching the debates made me doubt my decision. The debates have actually made me uncertain. And I couldn’t help but wonder:
Do we really only have two options in this election? What if we really want something different than this?
In 2008, I voted for Barack Obama. I got caught up in the emotion of his campaign and was deeply moved by his speeches. We spent that election night with friends, staying up late to watch the results come in. We all gathered around the TV and I even cried a little because I was, well, proud. It was amazing to feel apart of something, to believe that hope and change was possible. I remember the drive home that night – feeling inspired in the march of progress, in the unchangeable ideals that make our country great.
Four years later, I haven’t exactly given up on President Obama. I’m just less hopeful that he’ll be able to accomplish anything because our political system is so broken. It all needs a drastic overhaul and maybe we need someone that can really “shock” the system. Maybe we need someone very unexpected to win, throwing off the whole media machinery and undermining (heck, exposing) the crazy pundits on both sides. We need a rebirth of our politics.
There’s a candidate named Jill Stein that I’ve been following (distantly, I’ll admit) for a few months now. She’s the Green Party candidate – a party I’d never really considered before this election. Visit her website and you’ll see no patriotic colors – just green, the color of her party. Visit her donation gauge and you’ll see it sits at a modest 250k.
There’s just a bit of bravery about her, about her policies, about the fact she’s even running for president. And it’s politicians like Jill that make me wish I had more options.
This year in Oklahoma, no third party candidates will be listed on our election ballot. So you have two choices: vote Team Blue or Team Red.
A third choice might have made it a far more difficult decision, if only I had the option.