Open letter to America: Vote your conscience, not an un-choice

Dear America,

This is not a letter about the merits of my favorite presidential candidate, though I have been very open about whom I currently support. This is about something far more important. This is a rallying cry to resuscitate a democracy that seems to be suffocating.

Imagine with me for a moment three friends by a water cooler.

Friend 1: No, I don't like A, but I voted for A because I hate B. I actually like C more, but I'm no idiot: C didn't stand a chance, just like the other wackos, D, E, and F.

Friend 2: Totally. I actually loath A and came to love D, but I didn't want to risk giving the country to B. There is no doubt: B would have single-handedly destroyed the world as we know it.

Friend 3: So, yeah... I didn't vote. A and B are both disappointing. But I didn't bother to think about any of the others, like C or D or whomever.

The day is November 9, 2016. And those reflections, whether spoken or unspoken, are far too common across America.

At least that is how the day after the presidential election will be if the majority of Americans continue to choose captivity to fear and a broken two-party system, or worse, political bondage by ignorance and idleness.

In America, we're as free as we choose to be. Candidates don't win or lose; we, the people, simply choose. And right now, America is paradoxically choosing its un-choice. 

Polls regarding Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton are consistent about at least one thing: The majority of Americans dislike and distrust both. Generally, people hate Trump more, but trust Clinton less. A super majority of Americans don't like Trump and a super majority don't trust Clinton. No one in his or her right mind would hire a babysitter, let alone a roofer, he or she didn't trust, but we're about to elect such a president.

And think about this for a moment: One-third of people who say they plan on voting for Clinton say they're doing it primarily to hurt Trump and a super majority on the Trump side say they're doing it to hurt Clinton.

In a nutshell, we (speaking for the majority) don't like Trump and Clinton; we don't even trust them. But one of them is about to be Commander in Chief.

That is unless everyday folks like you and I get off our rears, stop playing to our fears, and declare our independence.

Declare independence from ignorance. Invest effort to study out all the candidates, not just the candidates two political parties have heaved upon usparties to which more than 40% of Americans do not subscribe. You have no excuse. Each candidate is only a click away. Alternatives to Trump and Clinton include leaders like Darrell Castle, Evan McMullin, Gary Johnson, and Jill Stein.

America, you have options.
Declare independence from fear.  Vote for the candidate you personally like and trust most, even if you have to write him or her in. It doesn't have to be one iota more complicated than that.

A vote primarily based on candidate popularity is not much of a vote at all. Predictor polls aren't there to tell you how to vote. They are there to tell you how hard you still need to work to get the best candidate into office. Sure, if you try to vote with the masses, you'll have a better chance of saying on November 9, "I won! I voted for the next president!" But such a victory is hollow and hides within it a grave loss: the loss of living authentic and actually making a difference. (If you end up voting for Clinton or Trump because you sincerely believe in one of them, by all means vote that way; just don't vote for one or the other by default, or worse, out of submission.) 

Finally, declare independence from silence. Tell others who you actually believe in and why. If you like them, they deserve the attention.

It's time for America to unshackle itself from any moral or political cowardice.

This is not supposed to be a land of fear and a home of two-party slaves. God bless the land of the free and the home of the brave!


An everyday American

Help me make this happen: Third Part Debates 2016 / Sign Petition
Also, consider supporting this cause: Open the Debates / Sign Petition

"Ignorance, when voluntary, is criminal, and a man may be properly charged with that evil which he neglected or refused to learn how to prevent." - Samuel Johnson

"If we are to guard against ignorance and remain free, as Jefferson cautioned, it is the responsibility of every American to be informed." - Ronald Reagan

"It is better to be unborn than untaught, for ignorance is at the root of all misfortune." - Plato

I just sent the following letter to all of the Utah news stations:
Open letter to Utah TV stations: Host Third Party Debates


  1. I believe in voting your conscience. But I also think the ethics of voting is a little more complicated than picking the person you personally like and trust the most. The practical effect of your vote is also a factor, isn't it? And one of which your conscience should take account? Now, I think I will vote for your man as well, even though he has no chance of winning. But my vote will be a sort of protest vote: anti-two-party, anti-Trump, anti-Hillary. If I didn't think that my little voting effort would contribute to signalling the People's dissatisfaction, and perhaps paving the way to a future in which independent candidates stand a chance to actually win--well, then, I would see no point in voting that way.

  2. Agreed. But why not suspend judgement on what is practical until the night of the election? We have a couple months to change what's practical.

  3. We live in an age of viral mania - laws are passed and situations made much more available because of the availability of the internet, the world is made so small because of innovations in communication. If there were ever a time when a 3rd party candidate could upset the status quo, it would be this time. Many people older than probably 35 or 40 will tell you it's not possible - that it's obvious because Ross Perot made HW Bush lose, that other third party candidates have run and failed - they did not live in this time. They do not understand the power of the media that is available to nearly every. Single. Voice. In America.
    This message is not to tell you who to vote for - his message is to not vote out of fear. Things have a way of working out.
    Adam, your point is good - you may not believe the other candidates will win, you may WANT to vote for one of the two major candidates, but at LEAST look into them! Think outside of the box we've been forced into by the two party system.

  4. I agree with you. People have more than 2 choices. The internet empowers people to be more informed than in times past when people had limited media choices to inform them. (Or, in some cases, only one letter after the person's name on the ballot to inform their choice.)

    I articulate my support of Evan McMullin here:

    I'm proud to live in Colorado, the 1st state where McMullin gained ballot access.

  5. Lempskies, Thanks for chiming in! I will check out that link. It's no secret that I am also a McMullin supporter; however, I am most passionate about helping third party supporters of all flavors band together to their candidates' mutual benefit by getting some debates underway. Have you signed the petition yet?

    Happy blogging!


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