Settle for a Good – Not Great – America

By Emily Cortes

Voting as a constitutional right and as a civic duty has evolved into an illusion of hope and fear. 

Many citizens are at their breaking points, and whether you’re right wing or left wing, we sometimes forget that we’re all on the same plane. This year in particular, it seems like Americans are desperate to get to the poles and demand change. The problem is that voting for the president on Tuesday, Nov. 3 is a ploy to make it seem like your voice and your concerns are being directly heard. 

Of course, our votes will contribute to the electoral college which will then decide if the United States will continue on their current path of making America “great” again, or if we’ll all just be settling for Biden. The president is seen by many people as one of the most powerful positions in the world, so why is it so difficult to get him to put an end to racial injustice, police brutality, sex crimes against children, and U.S. military personnel being murdered on their own home bases? I honestly couldn’t fathom what actual work the president completes in an average day, but he needs the joint effort of every elected official to tackle the social issues average citizens understand and want to change. 

In order to demand and facilitate change we must vote at the local and state levels, research the people who represent your town, county, or state in Washington, and understand what bills are being passed or denied, who passed or denied them, why, and what else was written in that bill that could affect you personally. All people in the House and Senate who’s jobs are to make laws typically skate by and let the blame fall to the larger names and faces in Washington. It’s cowardice, but us citizens allow it.

This doesn’t mean that the president (not just the current one, but presidents over the years) doesn’t deserve most of the blame, it comes with the job title and is clear as day in the job description. But, how did the GOP and the left both get to a point where the only people they could possibly agree to nominate for the presidency are Trump and Biden?

The slogan, “Settle for Biden” basically sums up all the arguments in three short words. Most people who want Trump out of office don’t want to put Biden in office either. However, what may be even worse is feeling like you need to keep Trump in office because you couldn’t bear to check off Biden on the ballot. And, of course, there are always those weird in-betweeners who either genuinely want Trump to win again, or Biden to take over. 

This unsettling pressure of picking the lesser of two evils is deterring a lot of people from even voting this year— not because they don’t want to, but because they have no idea how to. The current state of our country and the past year we experienced all around the world has opened the eyes of many people and sparked a call to action. Voting in local and state elections is where you make change and see the results in your local community. 

All voting is equally important according to the constitution, but the fear of our founding fathers was that average citizens were too stupid to make such important decisions. Would you consider that the modern day, average citizens are proving them right or wrong?

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