Why Political Party Allegiance (PPA) is Destructive
Thomas Jefferson once said, “The man who reads nothing at all is better educated than the man who reads nothing but newspapers.”
How blindly and how eagerly do we hand over the reigns of our legislative affairs to either the Democratic Party or the Republican Party simply because we feel loyal to a label? How quickly we mistake the opinions and endorsements made by political leaders or news show commentators as even relatively close to researched, vetted, or verified.
I am a registered Republican. When I was 18 I registered to vote, excited and hopeful. I don’t really remember it, but I imagine that’s how I felt.
That was almost twenty years ago. I’ve never once voted straight down any party line, and am likely either Independent or Libertarian, though I’m not always sure myself and don’t really care to be a member of a club. I’m simply not willing to hand over my right to vote in the primaries because I don’t belong to a major party, so here I sit. Why?
Fear of Roe v. Wade being overturned. Distrust over programs like GW Bush’s “Healthy Marriage Initiative” spending millions on telling people how to be married. My opposition to the war on drugs. My support of stem cell research. My disgust with engagements in war efforts that are a wolf in sheep’s clothing designed to enrich already wealthy corporations at the expense of the lives of our men and women in uniform. Taxes, healthcare, spying, propaganda, welfare, jobs… all the lines are blurred by the two parties that take zealot-like positions to either the left or the right without care of consequence for the citizens left in the middle of the fray.
But what else can I expect? Their by laws are clear: “Elect Democrats” or “Elect Republicans”. The Democratic by laws don’t say, “Create, review and pass laws in the best interest of the country no matter their party affiliation.” Nor do the Rules of the Republican Party say “Stop irrational fighting over ideologies that are harmful to our citizens.”
Both parties, in their fight to differentiate themselves are just alike, taking corporate dollars for campaigns in the billions and only working three days a week. Getting paid to not do their jobs or balance budgets… its quite the scheme.
Oh, the news today! I don’t watch mainstream media, I scroll through snippets. Mainstream news, in my opinion, is poison for the soul, and I’m unsure what is worse: The networks’ own programming, or the commercials created by unidentified special interest groups formed to spread more propaganda?
I watch CSPAN so I can observe without commentary what is happening in the government. I don’t need a translator named Rachel, or Glenn, or whatever. News today isn’t journalism, it’s editorials presented as news, which is scary because people believe in them. You know who you are.
My blog, for instance, is a blatant subjective perspective on issues. It’s mine. I don’t present my opinions as fact, unless those are historical facts used to support my opinions and can be verified and substantiated, or are personal accounts, and then I prove it. But all in all, it’s my writing and my perspectives on various things from my MetroSectional. If I contribute to a publication, it’s based upon my own, not their, opinions for that piece. I just write, and research, and read, and write more.
But when a news company celebrity subjectively endorses a party or candidate, just as when a party or party leadership member endorses the same, we must remember that it’s all just that: it’s subjective.
News and sadly political party leadership today have become entertainment cloaked as journalism and lawmaking. Pseudo-anchormen and women with MSNBC, FOX or otherwise aren’t reporters, they’re entertaining people with their personal commentary, for ratings and viewers, and the less skeptical voter regurgitates their words like its truth and gospel. They’re live bloggers with a whole bunch of readership. Party Committee and Club leaders aren’t working for us, they’re fundraising for their Party-no matter who their candidate may be. They have to because their oath is to their party, not the people.
In a meeting recently, myself and few others voiced our concerns that the voter population, for the most part, have a trust in their parties that when the party leadership endorses a candidate, they’ve vetted him or her. Just as when those same voters turn on the news, they expect that the journalists verified facts. But it’s just not how things work any longer.
Political Party Allegiance (PPA) has become dangerous. Dangerous to the citizenry, and dangerous to our Constitution. Just because you vote doesn’t mean you’re doing your homework, which I highly advise. Meet your lawmakers. Research them and their policies. And most importantly… turn off the freaking television.