This upcoming presidential election may be one of the most important determinants of democracy and the future of the United States government. Over the past 20 years, we have seen a rise in political polarization — an increasing split between the Democratic and Republican parties. It has only gotten worse over the past four years, since the beginning of the Trump era.
Within this era, we’ve seen an ideological splintering of the Democratic party specifically. The Democratic Party has continued to disappoint, continued to uphold imperialist and capitalist interests, continued to co-opt ideals of justice to save face without bringing them to fruition. In response to this, we’ve begun to see pushback against electoral politics.
Despite my own radical left standing, I have come to the realization that the Twitter demagogues pushing for removing themselves from electoral politics perhaps do not understand the weight of this election. This is not to say that there are many issues within electoral processes that must be addressed and deconstructed — this is a process that has always been inherently racialized.
Further, why should BIPOC be forced to choose between two senile white men, neither of whom will actually further any sort of egalitarian agenda centered around justice? Joe Biden will continue to further a capitalist, imperialist agenda, and these are the root causes of inequality in the first place. These issues are more than valid, you can’t vote and be done. Change comes from the bottom up.
Our current voting system is in immense need of reform. The electoral college directly contradicts the idea of democracy; not everybody’s vote counts or is even represented. If you live in a state that generally votes blue (like anywhere in the West coast), choosing to stay out of electoral politics in protest will not affect the election, at all.
It’s not the blue or red states that matter in this election, it’s the battleground states. Within these swing states, it is the suburbanite votes that really matter. Despite changing demographics within the suburbs, it seems as if candidate issue framing will play a large role in their voting behavior. President Trump can easily play into suburbia fear of violence and destruction by stepping into the role of protector, as he has already done through his denunciation of ANTIFA.
President Trump can easily play into suburbia fear of violence and destruction by stepping into the role of protector, as he has already done through his denunciation of ANTIFA.
Choosing not to vote in this election is fair — nobody wants to have to choose between the lesser of two evils. Joe Biden is not the man of the people. He never was; he never will be. He will not further any sort of egalitarian agenda but will continue with an imperialist, capitalist campaign. He may not do anything of substance or value for this country. On the other hand, here’s what another four years of Trump would look like:
- The continued destruction of the environment, increased greenhouse gas emissions, wildfire seasons that worsen every year.
- Diminished access to healthcare.
- A Supreme Court with a very conservative bias, thus preventing the judicial system from making any sort of progress or change.
- A potential civil war between protestors and law enforcement. If Trump has already deployed the National Guard in response to the protests, he will bring in the military.
But the most important fact is that another four years of Trump will lead to the complete destruction of what little sense of democracy we have right now. Over the last 20 years we’ve seen a rise in unitary executive action, a direct result of political polarization and gridlock in government.
If Trump wins, the gridlock will only get worse, and nothing will get done outside of executive actions. This will lead to increasing executive power, and eventual authoritarianism. We will see continued voter suppression, we will see only the interests of the 1% represented, exacerbating the already massive wealth disparities in this country.
According to the Pew Research Center, 83% of registered voters say it matters who wins this election. The Pew Research Center’s most recent study on voter engagement shows us that perhaps we will have record voter turnout and engagement this presidential election, despite ideological splintering within the Democratic party and leftist encouragement to pull away from electoral politics. That said, the study also showed that while Trump had stronger supporters, a higher percentage of Biden’s moderate supporters were certain about voting for Biden come November.
The Pew Research Center’s most recent study on voter engagement shows us that perhaps we will have record voter turnout and engagement this presidential election, despite an ideological splintering within the Democratic party and leftist encouragement to pull away from electoral politics.
Most pundits are forecasting a Biden presidency, but so much can change in the next two months. There is a very real chance of another four years of Trump, but maybe it’s not all bad. A second term of Trump will continue to radicalize the left, it will continue to stoke the flames of revolution. Maybe a second term of Trump will lead to public changes and realization of the need for reform and abolition.
Last updated 9/14/20
Read more by this author: