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Letter to the editor

Obama, McCain unfit for presidency

October 10, 2008

This election season has been characterized by a single word: Change. Change has pervaded the campaigns of both John McCain and Barack Obama.

Both men have claimed that they will be able to alter the course our country has taken. They have chosen different paths, but both purport that they are able to create “change you can believe in” or that “change is coming.” The question is, can either of them really bring about significant change?

History has taught us that change does not come from above. With few notable exceptions, change has always begun from the grassroots level. The civil rights movement, workers rights, and universal suffrage all began from the bottom up.

It was not politicians who came up with these ideas, it was not men who spent any amount of time on Capitol Hill who fought for these changes, but it was the common people who championed these causes. Taking history as our guide, can we expect either McCain or Obama to bring lasting change to our current troubles?

The answer is no. We have to look to individuals who are not from Washington, people who believe that Democracy doesn’t mean fitting into one of two neat packages; people who desire something more from their government.
Many people view so called “third parties” as a joke. However, these are the same people that complain that they have to make a decision between two terrible choices, or who submit to the “lesser of two evils” argument.
In a functioning democracy, people should vote their beliefs, they should not vote for one person because “we cannot afford to have the other person in office” or because “they are the only ones running.”

The lesser of two evils is not good enough for this country. Even here on campus we are inundated with the idea that there are only two parties.

Some of you may have been to the Vice Presidential debates at the University Center. What most of you may not know is that both the College Democrats and College Republicans were invited to have a table at the event in order to promote their candidates.

The third party groups, however, were not invited. They were looked over either out of ignorance or out of malice, but both cases are equally reprehensible.

One group in particular will be fighting to get a spot at the next debates, the Union of Democratic Progressives. They believe in “independent minds for independent change.” They invite everyone who believes in democracy to thank your local “radical,” because it is the ones who think outside the two-party box that really create change.

It is time that people stop voting for one of two candidates because the pundits and news stations tell them they only have those options.

It is time we as a nation took back our democracy and voted for what we truly believe in. This year I will be voting for a third party candidate and I would enjoin all my fellow voters to do the same.

Alexandar Nelson
Student