OOne of our biggest mistakes as a nation is our relentless campaign to convince generations of voters that elections are about freedom of choice.
This may be true if you are a type that has not been oppressed by the state historically. Many Whites, particularly Whites, fall into this category. They have the ability – the power – to be swing voters, knowing that their basic civil rights are out of line. And many of them have invented new dangers – such as Second Amendment threats – while pretending to defend their rights against those threats.
In November 2019, Nate Cohn in The New York Times reviewed several surveys of swing-state voters and looked specifically at the “persuadable pool,” the 15 percent of voters in battleground states who have not decided and are still thinking of voting. to Donald Trump or a Democrat.
He found out, “As a group they are 57 percent male and 72 percent White.”
For most other people, “freedom of choice” in elections is an illusion. We are captives of the two-party system. We are political hostages.
Voters who are subject to oppression have only two choices: the kind-hearted hunters (Democrats) or the cruel hunters (Republicans).
Democrats will work for your freedom, but not to the extent that it will endanger their power. They have to work against Republicans, who, now more than at any other time in recent memory, seem like hell in establishing a new age of extreme restrictions under the banner of the rights of states.
Choosing between the two is not an option at all. Voting for Democrats is the only option, not because they fully respond to your plea, but because they are the only bastion against disaster.
It’s not a lesser-of-two-evils view but a light-switch view: the choice is light-no matter how dark-or darkness.
There was some skepticism about Hillary Clinton in 2016, and that’s what gave us Trump, who gave us a radical, theocratic Supreme Court, who gave us dozens of profound regressive decisions: falling into Roe v. Wade, restricting the ability to enforce Miranda’s rights, tied the country’s hands in its fight against climate change.
Today, we live in a kind of captivity, and captivity, of any kind, has no conscience in some. So, they fly against it. In the past year, progressives have demanded action from Democrats, demanded that promises be fulfilled, demanded that one more fight be carried out. But, ultimately, it is futile. To make matters worse, it often gives ammunition to cruel captives waiting for an opportunity to replace the kind ones.
There are times in the electoral calendar where Democratic voters will be more compelled to challenge Democratic politicians to stay true to their goals while doing the least amount of damage to their electoral opportunities: the prime time when Democrats vote in possible Democratic candidates and in the early stages. day of the president’s term.
But once those windows close, the time for complaining is over. One must enter the defensive stage.
All of this is incredibly unsatisfactory, but it’s a fact that voters must accept. We need to dispel the myth of elections and return to the reality of them.
That often means swallowing a bitter pill, when it comes to terms with the fact that our priorities are not always aligned with the politicians we choose to represent us.
Politicians in the hyper-politicized, two-party system understand that winning and holding their seats is the first order of business. In a position of power or a vote in Congress, they can do things, even if their achievements are limited in scope. But if they lose a seat, there is nothing to do. In fact, there is a good chance that something very harmful could happen.
In that equation, the simple effort to make progress – even if the effort is weak – should suffice. It is the “should” in that sentence that rages against us in the search for complete freedom, political and so on.
It’s crazy, I know. I’m getting crazy. When I see broken promises, when I see existential issues being diverted behind the burner, when I see politics tiptoeing when there should be stomping, I get angry at it. This is quite frustrating. I know that politics has won the will of the people again.
But I try to remind myself what every voter should do: This is the system in which we are trapped. We can try to reform that system or at least force our leaders to consider radically changing it. Both noble endeavors, but they are incredibly difficult and, at least, not close at hand. In the meantime, we need to work within the current system.
Maybe one day there will be a third party or even multiple parties, but that won’t happen in the next presidential election.
This brings me to President Joe Biden: Whatever you think of him and his performance – whether you champion his success or focus on the areas where he has fallen short – whether he chooses to run again for election, as the White House has insisted that he would. , he will be the only option. In that situation, he became a last line of defense.
His shortcomings become secondary. Helping to ensure his re -election becomes an act of self -preservation.