There are a few things we can all go ahead and agree on:
- Trump and Clinton are the respective GOP and Democratic nominees.
- Those who are going to vote for Trump and Clinton have already decided to do so, and there is absolutely no convincing them to vote for the other.
- The vast majority of people vote along party lines.
There are also a few things the majority of Americans can likely agree on:
- The two party system is broken, for a variety of reasons.
- Most Americans feel like they’re voting for a lesser of two evils in any given election.
- Most Americans feel like voting for someone they truly believe in is wasting a vote, and essentially casting a vote for the other side.
So with that in mind, let’s assume a couple of things. First, you’ve likely already decided who you’re going to vote for, and there really isn’t a chance of dissuading you. Second, discussing Trump versus Hillary in almost any context, sharing memes, poking jabs at the other side… none of this is going to do any good with regards to gaining more votes for your side. The lines have already been drawn. The conversation thus far has been almost exclusively about two people, and any discussion of the issues at hand has been almost completely forgotten.
So let’s start a conversation. What’s the harm? Let’s talk about Gary Johnson. No, I’m not trying to persuade you to vote for him (I’ve already assumed your mind is made up and you can’t be dissuaded). I think that one of the main things that the Johnson/Weld ticket brings to the table is the opportunity to examine the status quo, the two-party system, from the outside. We can go ahead and assume that this ticket isn’t going to win the presidency.
So why not talk about it? Why not use this opportunity to discuss the actual issues, rather than throwing jabs at Trump or Hillary. Let’s forget, for the moment, about Trump’s supposed arrogant belligerence (as seen by the detractors) or his propensity to speak his mind (as seen by his supporters). Let’s forego Hillary’s criminal activities (as seen by her detractors) or her extensive political experience (as seen by her supporters). Let’s forget about the people, whose supporters have already been assembled along ideological lines, and let’s have an actual conversation about the issues this country faces.
Johnson brings that opportunity. We can forget about the actual election, the results of which may have already been decided but not yet seen, and for a few months we have a unique opportunity to bring a fresh perspective and a new accountability to the system by simply asking that we talk about the issues. We should have a conversation, not about the people who are running, but about where this country actually needs to go to move forward. We can skip the dirty politics, the cheap shots, the clever but stupid memes full of low blows, half truths, and personal attacks. We can simply talk about what should happen, regardless of who is elected.
Is that something you can get behind? Just having a conversation – that’s all I ask. This isn’t the opportunity for anyone to grandstand and beg for votes; this isn’t the place for us to persuade someone to switch political parties or exchange cheap shots about pasts and character. I’m simply inviting you to take part in something I’ve termed The Conversation.
Will you join me?