Every time that I make the statement that I do not support either Obama or McCain, people look at me somewhat puzzled and then comes the question: "Are you gonna vote?"
Of course I am going to vote. I am just not going to vote for either Obama or McCain. Some would say "you are throwing your vote away" because only one of the two will win and therefore any vote cast for somebody else is a waste. I am sorry to offend anyone who thinks this way but this is sheer stupidity. Voting is not a game that we get to play in November. Our votes have real impact on our lives and should not be taken lightly. If we are disenchanted with the reality of the political system then it is our responsibility to do everything we can to change it. We do not change it by accepting the canard that the two parties want us to believe. They are the ones who have been in power for so very long and who have lead us to the reality of today.
Our responsibility as voters if we want our democracy to work is first of all to get informed and to think critically by questionning those who are in power and who come to us during election times to request our votes. We have to realize that we are the ones who decide and we are the ones who actually hold the power because we are the ones who actually get to cast the vote. Unfortunately in the US we have an ignorant electorate (no offence intended I use ignorant not as an insult but in the sense of uninformed or misinformed). The coporate media holds the key when we solely rely on information provided by the handful of corporations which control all of the major media outlets in this country. Their interests are not generally consistent with the demands of a true democracy and dissemination of truthful information. Their interests are in maximizing profit and getting an ever increasing share of the market and therefore any action which does not serve this purpose is simply not undertaken or even contemplated. Those corporations will only serve a system which allows them to realize their fundamental purpose "the bottom line". If the voters are looking for real information on TV or by reading mainstream newspapers they are getting only a partial picture and often a distorted one. Getting informed requires going beyond the headlines, reading between the lines and seeking alternative sources, Democracy is hard work.
After getting informed, our responsibilty as voters is to choose what is best--or we think is best--for our country. We should cast our votes for those who we think will help us, the people as individuals and collectively, realize our potential and our hopes in leading a decent prosperous life for ourselves and future generations. The choices offered to us during election times should be real choices and our votes should be votes we actually whoheartedly defend and be proud of. The choice should not be one of choosing the lesser of two evils. Our vote should not be a negative one as in voting against a candidate but a positive one as in voting for someone or something. This is a vote that actually counts in my view, all the others are wasted because they do not contribute to bringing change on the contrary, they only perpetuate the negativity and maintain the status quo.
Yes I am going to vote like I always do. However, I am not going to hold my nose and cast a ballot for someone I do not agree with when there is a candidate on the ballot who I happen to agree with wholeheartedly. I will not vote the two party system when I believe that such a system leads to corruption and to the abuse of power.
Yes I am going to vote for Cynthia McKinney and Rosa Clemente the Green Party candidates. Among those candidates on the ballot, they and the party platform are the closest to my true beliefs. They are the alternative and the real change from politics as usual. They are the antidote to the status quo of corporate dominated political system--otherwise known as fascism. They are the real voice for true change not just a facelift.