Let me start with a quote that reflects the last several election cycles.
“It is only when the people become ignorant and corrupt, when they degenerate into a populace, that they are incapable of exercising their sovereignty. Usurpation is then an easy attainment, and an usurper soon found. The people themselves become the willing instruments of their own debasement and ruin.” – James Monroe, 5th President of the United States of America
It seems nearly universal, people are ready for this election cycle to be over. The steady beat of “never Trump”, “never Hillary”, and making the false choice between the “lesser of two evils” is deafening. Thank goodness it will be over soon. Or will it only morph into a partisan talk head abyss? It seems that it’s all boiled down to a corrupt criminal insider, a bombastic buffoon, or a legitimate third option, but you might “wasting your vote”.
No one likes to be called ignorant, particularly about matters of their political beliefs. However, when the sources of your knowledge become corrupt, so does the opinions you carry. Not due to any fault of your own; you are just making sense of bad information. When people cease thinking as a free individual and instead identify with a group, then they let the mantra of the group dictate their thoughts. We stop thinking for our sovereign selves and just beat the drum laid before us.
As children we are taught not to lie, cheat, steal, and brag. Yet we are forced to endorse a liar, cheater, thief, and egomaniac in this election. Regardless of which major party candidate you feel compelled to vote for, your endorsement should give the little voice in your head pause. There is rarely a week go by that someone doesn’t lie to me; and I promptly resolve to minimize my exposure to that person. In some circles, I have heard such disreputable behavior either endorsed or sloughed off as inconsequential. This tolerance is so prevalent among our fellow citizens, that it is manifest in those we choose as leaders. Government and laws are a reflection of the people.
The shear mass of the political machine and gregarious nature of a populace mentality makes principled change impossible. We need a renaissance of individuals who strongly believe in bringing the government to justice. Until then, I guess we’ll have to hold our nose when entering the voting booth.