Letter: Casting ballot for third party not a wasted vote

From: Brent Land


It feels as if Trump versus Clinton has monopolized our televisions, radios and social media for all of eternity. People everywhere speak fearfully of this election’s conclusion. Seemingly, most people are concerned with how much one person may irreparably damage our nation. Why? Because we allow our candidates to focus discussion on their respective private lives and emotional issues such as abortion and gun control.

We let them squabble over who is going to allow us to keep the largest (although still minuscule) portion of our money via tax cuts, rather than discuss the drastic tax reform we need. We allow them to bicker over who is better at killing people we don’t happen to like, instead of using our military for its only constitutional purpose: defense.

We allow them to divide us against each other through identity politics. We allow them to fight over how best to invade our privacy and reduce our liberties under the guise of health and safety, rather than insist that liberty is more valuable than security. We stand behind two diametrically opposed political parties proclaiming their particular brand of tyranny best represents American values.

In the meantime we get angry with friends, family, neighbors and complete strangers who disagree with us. We call them derogatory names, all while professing to care about our country. Politicians cannot make our country great. That power and responsibility lie with us. As long as we ignore critical issues and hone in on inflammatory ones, belittling those with differing opinions, the course of our nation will not change. Until we demand elected officials who are willing to put citizens first, nothing of substance will change. Until we decide to treat those with whom we have differences better, the outcome of an election is trivial.

For just a moment, forget all the media hype and examine the mainstream candidates anew. Hillary Clinton doesn’t represent you, unless you happen to be a member of America’s ruling class elite. Donald Trump doesn’t represent you, unless you are a crony-capitalist. There are three candidates for president on the ballot in all 50 states. Google them. Read about their lives and livelihoods. Then ask yourself which one is more like you. If you believe that someone whose wealth came from a life in politics is going to understand your needs, then vote for Clinton. If you feel that someone who has never known poverty or middle-class life can relate to your struggles, then vote for Trump. If there is any part of you that feels neither Trump nor Clinton can identify the American majority’s needs, then vote third party.

Don’t ever believe that a third party vote is wasted. A vote for someone who doesn’t represent you is a wasted vote. The establishment will be closely watching third party election returns. This year, make your vote count and send them a message: You’ve had your chance. Vote third party.