By Bryan C. Kuriawa
Before delving into this article, this writer would like to make a disclaimer. The opinions expressed here are by a libertarian-leaning writer and do not reflect the collective views of section editors and individual writers at The Tower.
At a young age, we reach the point when we as citizens have the formal right to vote. In this sense, an individual feels that he or she has a part to play in the democracy our nation is. They feel, and have been taught consistently, that their votes can make a difference.
Yet, in these upcoming midterm elections, will such votes make a difference, or is our current system of political operation stagnant?
Several months ago, an NBC/Wall Street Journal poll found only 14 percent of those surveyed approved of Congress and 19 percent were in favor of the GOP. With these numbers, perhaps someone would take notice and address these concerns, right?
A Real Clear Politics poll, surveying Oct. 3 through Oct. 20, found an average of 13.5 percent approve of the government’s current conduct.
These low approval ratings embody a fact the political Left and Right in Washington have continued to ignore. The American populace is sick of the manner in which the government is being run and continues to be handled. We don’t like the direction our nation is moving, both nationally and internationally.
In a nation divided on various grounds, economically, politically, and socially, one of the most common areas of agreement is over the way our nation is being run.
To many, the modern political system, regardless of the party or politician representing them, is both out of touch and increasingly deadlocked. Nothing feels accomplished by either side of the aisle in recent years. At this point, one may recall the words of early twentieth century anarchist, Voltairine de Cleyre.
“Seek through the legislative halls of America and find, if you can, the Government.”
This brings this writer back to his earlier discussion on the subject of voting in the November midterm elections. By the time this article is published, the elections will be over and representatives will once again head off to Washington.
A small minority of officials governing the will and actions of a majority. To the younger generation, of which many Kean alumni fall under, how are these modern politicians reaching out to a social media and technology-oriented demographic?
A recent article on National Review Online highlighted one such effort by the political group, Rock the Vote, entitled, “TurnOutForWhat.” This video, featuring a variety of “trendy” celebrities, intended to demonstrate the benefits of voting.
Suffice to say, anarchism may have seen a rise in Google searches, along with an increase in the sale of Vodka. If this video alone suggests a trend, both Democratic and Republican, to encourage younger voters to turn out, they will be laughed out of the arena.
Will these elections truly change any elements of our existing political system, which is proving harder to make headway on critical legislation? Considering the way everything has been preceding, the answer could be a resounding “No.”
No matter which party you vote for, the question won’t be whether or not any change will result, it’s the overarching results. Neither party has much of the public’s support at heart, despite the manner politicians carry on about this subject.
Does this mean there isn’t anyone in government to view favorably? There may be a few, yet for the most part, their true intentions lie with a group of politically connected interests.
True change, politically, is becoming harder and harder to find at the election booth, and it may not appear for some time. Until then, in our own voluntary fashion, we must look for ways to improve our society for the better. The political parties in government will continue in their own conceited fashion until we can create a real change that will make them take notice.
For all of his faults, our 40th President, Ronald Reagan, summarized the situation quite accurately years before.
“Government is not the solution to the problem, Government is the problem.”