Since it’s Election Day, I think it’s time I had a big rant on being in America for the rat-race!
Until today I have tried my hardest to not read the newspapers and not listen to the radios. The bombardment of negative advertising has been overwhelming. However I think it’s unwise to be in America and not use this as an educational tool to broaden my mind, so I’ve done my research, and here’s my subjective opinion:
The ridiculous amount of negative campaign advertising is the weirdest thing and I really don’t believe it has a role in the political system, however – that’s what politics are in the end right? All the adds on TV consist of “don’t vote for … because he failed to do this, this and this”, yet miss the hard facts on the representative parties that voters need to make an informed choice. It’s just a case of slinging shit at each other instead of being civil. This bombardment is actually encouraging people NOT to vote, because they are utterly tired of hearing about it. It fuels negativity and hate for the political system instead of encouraging people to band together and rebuild the country in these tough economic conditions. How does all this motivate people to get involved and support the American political system?
Next; Montana is predominantly a republican state, especially when it comes to heavy issues such as the abortion debate and women’s rights. I’ve definitely observed this through the die-hard republicans who have been holding signs on the side of the road this past week branding anti-abortion slogans. Seriously though, it’s not the 1950’s and I swear that’s what Romney has built his campaign around. Realistically, unless women want to be repressed, Obama is the right choice. He is more supportive of women’s rights and equality in the workplace, and showed this when he signed the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act to help women fight against pay discrimination. While the progress of this has been slow, at least it’s a step in the right direction. Additionally Obama is openly more supportive of gay and lesbian rights while Romney is opposed to gay marriage. Again – 1950’s?! We’re all entitled to our own opinion, but it seems a more liberal mindset is favourable in the 21st century.
Therefore considering that Missoula is predominantly a student population, it is clearly a town in favour of Obama. Not only does he represent a more diverse and free-thinking America, but he has fought to keep the cost of college education down when it looked like the student loan rates here would double.
And considering that most students are representing the up and coming middle class (just the same as NZ), it seems any break we can get is a good one. Smaller student loans are obviously favourable since it’s going to take the best part of 15 years to pay them off…
However – I think though the most important thing to ask ourselves in the face of Election Day is “do we really want the American military to increase their budget and spending”? Obama kept his promise in ending the war in Iraq, and has been slowing removing soldiers from Afghanistan. This has been supported through the reduction in size of both the US Army and the Marines. Yet Romney viewed this as “tragic” when the president ended the war and bought troops home. Supporting Romney seems like voting to start a new world war since I’ve heard him say this week “of course America needs to continue military actions”. Oh dear. It’ll never end!
Who knows what the outcome today will be? I know who I’m supporting.
I’ll write a follow up blog in the days to come with some beautiful quotes to build on what I’ve heard today – Since “American people are the greatest people on earth!”
(Thank Facebook for these!)