It’s one of the most frightening things imaginable. You’re out one evening, minding your own business, enjoying the night air as the stars begin to poke out from behind some clouds, when you hear a low mumbling near by. “VOTES”, the cry comes, louder this time in a rumbling raspy monotone. You turn, horror filling your eyes as political party members come stumbling out of the bushes, trying their hardest to push their disassociated platform onto you to gain your vote. “VOOOTES!”, they’re closing, hemming you in on all sides, surrounding you. Your pulse quickens and you being to sweat as you realize you’ve made a critical error.
You’ve left your shotgun at home.
As much as this may sound like a scene from a B rated Hollywood thriller, it is unfortunately the state of our political system. I’m sad to say it, but our system has been overrun with political zombies. No, I’m not talking about uncharismatic politicians like John Kerry, nor brainless ones like George W. Bush, I’m talking about the endless droves of politicians and voters who mindlessly follow the drum beat of the nonsensical platforms that dominate our politics.
A quick look at Congress reveals a deep sickness in American politics, the division down the party aisle. At some point we went horribly, terribly wrong, and made politics a game of Republicans vs. Democrats, when in reality it should be an issue of all politicians from a given state working together to meet the needs of the people they represent. While it is fine for Republicans from California and Texas to occasionally rub elbows and work together, in the end representatives and senators from Texas should be sticking together for what their state needs, not what some amorphous mindless party desires.
What amazes me is the number of Americans who become bitten by the political zombie, and become political zombies themselves, mindlessly voting the party line, regardless of the candidate. All they seem to care is which faceless organization controls congress, giving no thought to the actual candidate, or the possible views the candidates might bring. Election day has been reduced to snacking on brains and moaning while mindlessly pushing red or blue for every single possibility.
The disease has affected candidates too. One would expect to see many pro-life, anti-war, anti-death penalty candidates, as the three opinions are not only compatible but complimentary. Why then do we have a glut of pro-life, pro-war, pro-death penalty folks on the right, and pro-choice, anti-war, anti-death penalty on the left? The answer is, of course, the zombified party platforms. You either march to the tune of the party line, or you find yourself unelectable.
This mindless transformation of American politics is damaging our society, our government, and our way of life. It is time we held our representatives and senators accountable for participating in partisan politics by electing some third party candidates to shake up the power structure. The next time you go to the voting booth and think of voting the party line, fight the urge to become a political zombie, vote for the best candidate, and ignore the meaningless “(D)” or “(R)” after their name. Write your politicians, tell them you’re tired of the mindless party politicos, and you demand change.
…and remember to pack a chainsaw. Zombies hate chainsaws.