Answering Political Apathy
A few years ago, the Republican Party had an internal revolt against their own big government policies, large deficits and spending levels that would make even the most intoxicated midshipman blush. Out of this rebellion, the Tea Party was born.
During the next election cycle, many new Tea Party heroes were born. Several candidates were elected under the newly christened banner. Thousands of angry Americans packed parks and town halls across the country looking to vent their frustration with soaring spending levels and draconian domestic policies they believed encroached on their liberties. The national media consistently bent over backwards looking for the Tea Party’s response to the issue of the day.
Fast forward a few years and look at the Tea Party today. They are toast. Done. Over. The large, angry crowds have disappeared. Town hall meetings are once again exclusive to the AARP crowd. The rhetoric condemning astronomical spending is gone. The Congressional freshmen who rode the wave of Tea Party anxiety to national prominence have all endorsed the establishment candidate. Everything is back to normal in the GOP. All of the pesky naysayers are now on board. The troublemakers have been silenced.
In a parallel universe, the shepherds at the Democratic National Committee have worked tirelessly to make sure they never see a similar revolt. Irrespective of the policies of their incumbent candidate, the DNC made sure that their herd never strayed too far from home. They used their sources at liberal publications to ensure their stories were properly sanitized before release.
The young, articulate, political outsider they chose as their candidate last election cycle has emerged as the chief promoter of the status quo. The message of change is gone. We now have daily excuses and a “Change Takes Time” theme.
The guy who promoted himself as a “constitutional professor” now says he can kill Americans without charge, trial or judicial review. Democrats who organized countless anti-war protests against the previous administration are eerily silent as their guy uses American drones to bomb and kill people in many countries never considered hostile to American interests. Surely, he hasn’t made the world any safer during his term. In fact, quite the opposite has occurred. We are now closer than WWIII than at any time since the Cuban Missile Crisis.
However, if you mention any of these facts to the party loyalists, they will consciously and willfully ignore them and continue with their cheers. The Republican anger about spending levels is about as silent as the anti-war voice in the Democratic Party. It is no longer acceptable to criticize party leaders for straying from party principles. It is much more agreeable to blindly nod and applaud.
Some citizens frustrated with the shenanigans question the effectiveness of even participating any longer. Those paying attention realize there is much to be desired from the current two-party system. The influx of money, corporate personhood and political apathy has done more to tear down our political system than any terrorist has done. Candidates without the blessing of establishment elites may succeed in inspiring their base of voters and bringing more people into the world of politics. However, their naïve exuberance is soon replaced with political apathy or the willful ignorance that consumed others before them.
The only solution is a strong third party voice willing to buck the two-party system and disregard the threats of the establishment elites. Our country needs someone who will challenge the compromised media selectively whitewashing inconvenient stories. They will ignore the polls and focus on the American people, not foreigners and politically connected corporations.
The lessons of the Tea Party and the anti-war movement should teach us all. Are we mere apathetic sheep to be led by political whims? Or are we the sons and daughters of those who worked tirelessly for liberty? Will our legacy be one of political corruption or resistance to the cancerous corporatism that has plagued the last decade?
The rest of the story is yet to be written. But surely it must be penned by the citizens.
Tags: Ak'Bar Shabazz, Democrats, Politics, Republicans, Tea Party, two party system