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And So It Begins




This is a real person who is out there, and this is the beginning of the 2020 Presidential Election Cycle. It has kicked off early because more than half of the American people have, on a regular basis, expressed their disgust with Trump and with the people who enable him to be awful. Our duty, as Americans, is to engage in this cycle and make the best choice for president.

I will not engage with these people because they are looking at participation in our democracy as if it is a retail transaction. It is anything but that. It’s a civic duty. You have the right to vote for whoever you choose, and you have the right not to vote. You have the freedom of speech guaranteed all Americans, and that allows you to enter the marketplace of ideas and try to persuade people to buy what you are selling and listen to your voice. You are also free to be irresponsible, crude, ignorant and confused.

At no point in the last several years have I even been tempted to support Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders. He is a joke and a fraud to me, and he is more interested in self-aggrandizement and being a purity troll than he is in actually getting elected and doing something for the American people. He is not too old, but he is too out of touch with what I want in a candidate. He and I probably agree on a lot of issues, and I wish him well because he is a reliable vote in the Senate for things I believe in. He is not, however, a member of the Democratic Party but is, to be blunt, along for the ride without having to pay for gas. He’s a freeloader on the left side of our political spectrum, too sure of his own absolute righteousness to join the party and contribute towards a common goal. He wants to take the party that is not his, use it for his own good, and yes, do some things I would agree with! But he wants to destroy it from the outside and marginalize it in terms of doing other good things for the American people. I am confident there are better candidates out there and I’m going to support them.

This individual, Orwell’s Ghost (really, you do need to include the apostrophe-someone’s ghost has earned its inclusion), wants a transactional experience with America’s democratic process. Give something to Bernie Sanders (that is not his) or he will take away his vote and give it to Trump.

Please do so.

The world is not here to kiss your ass. The world is here for you to participate in it. Contribute if you can, try not to be a dick about it, and leave things better than you have found them, if possible. If not, go the fuck away and be rest assured, your message is not selling and your ability to be heard and have influence will not work with people who have heard what you have to say.

The very premise of your threat - give him the nomination, or else - is anti-democratic (small “d”). It’s fascist in a way, and we’ve had one too many fascists in the White House already this century, thank you very much. How about you just root for your candidate, participate in the process and vote, and drop the threats? If a majority of Democrats decide to go in a different direction, I understand your butt-hurt. I’ve felt the exact same way, many times. My candidates have occasionally failen by the wayside, but that has never led me to want to vote against my own self-interests and for a Republican.

I mean, what part of a “two party system” do you not understand? It’s a two party system in this country. End of damned story.

When you threaten to vote for Trump unless the Democratic Party, which isn’t yours, gives the nomination to Bernie Sanders, who is not a Democrat, you have surrendered your right to be taken seriously in American political discourse. You are a useful idiot for Republican purposes. You have made an asshat’s choice, and all that’s left is for you and yours to enjoy the lesson in apostrophes.

I suspect we will hear from a good many of these people in the years ahead (good God, it’s going to be one hell of a long cycle). You can safely ignore them, and I shall do my best to do just that.

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