So, why am I voting for Jill Stein?
[JG: I already voted for Jill Stein, via Florida absentee ballot]
I previously supported Bernie Sanders because he was, on many levels, a welcome voice speaking truth to power, drawing attention to rampant institutional economic inequality, racism, corruption in the electoral system, and the urgent need to address climate change. Like a lot of people, I was disappointed when Sanders lost the Democratic Primary race to Hillary Clinton.
I hoped at that point that he might join forces with Jill Stein and the Green Party, but he declined that unique opportunity.
Bernie never spoke to the all-important issues of U.S. economic and military imperialism the way that Jill Stein has consistently done, but he was a credible voice for change in many other areas. He made his choice to get on the Hillary Clinton Democratic Party bandwagon because he appeared to feel that it would be the best way to prevent a Trump presidency.
I understand and respect his stance, shared by many other well-intentioned and thoughtful people, but I believe it is short-sighted. It is not enough to simply say “I tried, I voted for Bernie in the Democratic Primary, but now I have to get in line behind Hillary.”
The powerful few who control national politics and the mainstream media by virtue of their overwhelming economic advantages are counting on supporters of Bernie Sanders and other political alternatives to now support the two Establishment candidates.
They are counting on no real change happening in the way this country is run and how average citizens are represented. At some point the system has to be overhauled, and the weeds have to be pulled out by the root. I do not want to reach the end of my life and have to accept that I did not vote my conscience as a citizen when it mattered most.
Democracy is not a fixed thing; it is an ongoing process that must be nurtured, pruned, and actively encouraged to grow or it will gradually cease to yield meaningful progress.
Times are changing and people all over this land - especially younger voters, who are the future of our republic's continuing democratic experiment - are awake and paying attention. They did not go to sleep when Bernie Sanders largely gave up the fight for significant change in our political-economic system.
JG: It was a huge mistake for Bernie Sanders to run as a Democrat. Ignoring that American imperialism exists is not going to make it miraculously disappear. I do not think that Bernie ever condemned Barack Obama's never ending wars. I was very disappointed with Bernie. The Democratic Party is the party of corruption.