Are Americans really about to elect a carnival barker, Donald Trump, or crook, Hillary Clinton, as President of the United States of America? If this happens, the American people will only have themselves to blame—not Donald Trump, not Hillary Clinton. Without a miracle, handcuffs for Hillary, or a delegate revolt against Trump at the GOP Convention in Cleveland, this nation is headed for more doom and gloom. An alternative exists for conscientious voters: rally behind a third-party candidate. Neither current candidate offers the essential vision our country needs. The time is right for a third-party to rise and challenge this antiquated two-party system.
Do we really want to elect a woman, Hillary Clinton, who views black boys and men as “superpredators”? Do we really want to elect a woman, Hillary Clinton, who changes her mind with the wind on the critical issues confronting our nation? Do we really want to elect a man, Donald Trump, who desires to ban all Muslims from entering our country? Do we really want to elect a man, Donald Trump, who mocks individuals with disabilities? Hopefully, the answer is no.
As the #NeverTrump and #WhichHillary movements continue to gain traction, a serious third-party candidate saving us from these two catastrophes, Clinton and Trump, could emerge. These two movements, however, must bear fruit: people uniting behind a single candidate who can defeat both Clinton and Trump.
Don’t allow people to condemn you into maintaining loyalty to your current political party. If you’re not happy with person who secures your party’s nomination, it’s not mandatory to vote for him or her. Vote for a third-party candidate who better reflects your values and who offers a better future for America. Even if you decide to return to your present political party the next election cycle, a powerful message still will be communicated: your vote isn’t automatic.
Ideally, this third-party candidate would be someone who could resonate with enough Democrats, Republicans and Independents. With three people essentially running for president, this third-party candidate would be able to win the presidency, forever giving Americans faith in third-party candidates.
Too many precious lives and treasure have been sacrificed to enfranchise Americans, especially blacks and women, for people to stay at home as a form of “protest.” A more productive form of protest is to evince that the two-party system isn’t here to stay and that the American people have an option beyond this system. The only real statement you make by not voting is a callous disregard for the great sacrifices that have been made to empower you with the right to vote. Think thoroughly about this before you resolve to sit at home foolishly pretending you’re doing something “revolutionary” by not voting.
Begin to join with others who reject Trump and Clinton to discuss possible candidates to support for a third-party run against them. You will ultimately need to agree on one candidate to draft and/or support.
Let’s start an authentic political revolution by transitioning our country to a three-party system. We desperately need an alternative to our extant two-party system.
Dr. Antonio Maurice Daniels
University of Wisconsin-Madison