Who I'm Voting For

Who I'm Voting For

Some housekeeping before we start: this post is going to be political and from this moment on, and with the way this blog is set up, you now have a choice whether or not to continue reading. I will not be accepting any messages of "keep your political views to yourself" or "this isn't the place for politics" because I am crafting this post in a way where it is not thrust upon you. If politics trigger you, be a better person, and move along. 

Who I'm Voting For

And here's the thing, I am a human being. I have views and opinions and I share these all here on my blog. I am allowed to do so. Just like you are allowed to not read it. So if you chose to read this post, then become offended, it's really on you. Any hateful or mean messages will not be tolerated, will not be responded to, and will not change my mind. 

So if you want to send me a mean message or leave a rude comment, just don't. For both of us, don't. I will leave you to your opinions and I hope you will leave me to mine.

Off topic, but it's always so weird to me that people choose to go out of their way to send hate speech against people's opinions that are different from theirs. What do they hope to achieve? Changing their mind? Just wanting to be mean? Trying to project their own feelings? It never made sense to me. Same thing when people message me saying "I'm unfollowing you" ... like, ok? So what? If me talking about basic human rights and decency to others offends you, there are larger issues at play. 

I believe I am a moderately political person, but I've gotten into it more over the past few years. I openly discuss it with friends and family but I've never believed it should be talked about openly to the public or with people I don't know. So this post is a little different and a little scary. And it's been sitting in my drafts for months. Nagging me, begging to be published. 

I think it's taken me so long to speak out about it out because I wanted it to be right. 

The right time, in the right way, for the right people. But after sitting on this post for a while now, I'm coming to realize that there is never going to be a "right" time. So here we go...

Growing up in Texas, I was raised in a republican household. And like most people, my political views fell in line with my parents and family. So when it came time to pick a party at 18, I registered Republican. I liked George W Bush (he was governor when I was growing up), I liked John McCain, I liked Mitt Romney. I didn't really know much else. My stepdad was one of the first people I truly knew that was a democrat. Even in college, I remember it being so strange to find out one of my best friends was too. It was really that uncommon. I didn't know much else. 

And I think a lot of people have a similar experience, republican or democrat. We all kind of live in an echo chamber of our own beliefs and like-mindedness. It's why I think it's so confusing for people to interact online with others, not like them, each side thinking how could they possibly think this way?

It wasn't until I started dating Andrew that he told me that I wasn't actually a Republican. 

I remember we were getting breakfast before work and somehow talking about politics and he said that none of my beliefs really aligned with the party (at least socially). I wasn't much into politics at the time. I just liked who I liked, not really knowing what they stood for. Honestly just going off who I thought they were as a person. It's why I also liked Obama so much in his last four years.

And it just kind of hit me ... yea, I guess I'm a technically (on paper) a republican but do my values and beliefs actually align with the party I'm a part of? The short answer was no. And the longer scarier answer was I didn't feel like I belonged to either party.

I think part of the reason I never really dove into politics much was because I didn't feel represented by either side. I aligned with different aspects from both parties but never found that represented in anyone in politics. I didn't feel represented by them because they always seemed a little out of touch with my reality. They seemed to be motivated by the wrong things and, in my opinion, have done what is best for them and not for me. And I found that it was always easier to just be blind to it all than to really confront it head on. What is there to do?

In 2016 I was still a registered republican and was honestly super embarrassed in the primaries. There were so many people and worst of all, the people I most liked or aligned with didn't make it far. So when it came down to decide between Trump or Clinton, I decided not to vote. I found myself hating both sides.

Since New York is pretty locked in as a blue state, I decided to forgo casting my ballot and stayed home. Embarrassing, I know. I'm also pretty embarrassed to admit that when Trump did win I honestly thought to myself, "what's the worst that could happen?" I curse the day I ever thought that. It shows how naive and privileged I was/am. What. a. dummy. 

It was only a few weeks in when he imposed his first travel ban, and that's when things started to sink in. 

A switch flipped in my mind: this guy is dangerous. The next four years solidified those fears and brought out deep anger and disgust. The conclusion four years later is that Trump is one of the worst things to ever happen to the presidency. In my opinion, I think he is a liar and is a threat to our democracy. My list of grievances goes on, but at the core of my issue with him is that he is just not a good person. 

Since 2016, I've never felt more abandoned or embarrassed by a party I supported. The people who are in congress and support Trump have lost all consciousness, all morality, and all my support. I'm honestly sickened that they decided to prioritize party over people. I believe they will be shown to be on the wrong side of history.

My philosophy with just about anything is if they don't care for me, then I won't care for them. 

So over the past four years, I started to educate myself more in the realm of politics, started staying up to date with the White House, both parties, the congresspeople that are meant to represent us ... all as the country started to become more and more divided. We stopped listening to facts and science and started making our own narratives to fit the story we wanted to tell. 

Fast forward to the democratic primaries that were just about as embarrassing as the republicans in 2016. They had so much time to find someone to defeat Trump -- literally anyone young and new -- to bring the world back together. Instead, they did the whole "throw it at the wall and see who sticks" game. It was the time to bring in someone other than an old, white, straight male to the presidency. But we got Joe.

Joe Biden wasn't my first (or top three) choice but he is who I will be voting for in November. 

I don't love Biden, nor do I know a lot of people that do, but he's the best we have and we all need to do what we can to help elect him in a few short weeks.

At the core, I believe Biden is a better person than Trump. I believe he will do better things for our country and do his best to move us forward and not backward. I believe he will condemn hatred. I believe he will fight to help save our planet. I believe he will fight to help save rights for all people. And I will simply believe him when he speaks. I believe he will be the best hope for our future.

I'm not trying to be dramatic here, but we truly need to vote as if our lives depend on it. Not just our own lives, but for those whose lives are at stake. We need to care for our neighbors no matter who they are, what they look like, who they love, or where they are from. We need to vote for someone who understands that supporting black lives, women's rights, climate change, access to affordable healthcare and gay rights is not political. It's human decency. It's science. It's the only way we move forward.

This will be a pivotal turn in our nation's future and I didn't want to sit by and not say anything. 

My hope with this blog post is to find others like myself feeling abandoned by a party. Feeling embarrassed and ashamed of the people we've elected to represent us, and also knowing that it is ok to pick a person > party. I hope this post finds people like me when I was younger, going with the flow of what the world around you says to do and think. And that whoever is reading this understands there are other options. There are better ways. That they're not alone if they go against the beliefs of family or friends. I'm here with you. I support you. 

I hope it finds people like me now who know morally that they need to vote for someone they may not truly like all that much. It's about our future, the future of our kids, the future of the world. The future of our rights, and protecting the rights of all those who have come before and that will come after. We need to leave this place better than when we left it. We need to care about the next generations. We need to take action and make sure we are heard. We must decide that the world changes because we demand it to.

We need to vote for Joe. 

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