Everyone’s waiting for someone else to stand up…

I can’t believe how pissed I am over this whole political thing! Like throw-your-hands-in-the-air kind of fed up and I can’t get it off my mind! While I can understand the apathy to some degree, I can’t understand how people don’t see that apathy is the very reason nothing will change.

It’s like everyone’s waiting for someone else to stand up and do something so they can follow.

And when someone DOES stand up, they laugh them off as a dreamer, or unpatriotic, or a wasted vote.

That thing I alluded to yesterday, where I said I’d admit to being wrong about something a while back? Psyche! It was about Ralph Nader and I wasn’t wrong, and here’s why.

I opposed Nader’s run in 2000 for three reasons:

1) because he was an opportunistic blowhard with no political experience, using the Green Party’s desire for legitimate national third party status as a platform for bashing the status quo without offering any viable solutions of his own;

2) the two-party system is firmly entrenched on the national level and change there will only come about when things get bad enough that the average American wakes up and starts to question the status quo;

3) Gore was a weak candidate, ripe for a seemingly everyday guy like Bush, malapropisms and all, to take down.

While there’s a million reasons Gore lost that election – and he did lose, despite the overall vote tally in his favor, as the electoral college wasn’t invented just for the 2000 elections – I believe Nader shares a small portion of the blame, if for no other reason, his shortsightedness.

The difference between Nader in 2000 and Kucinich today is that, by virtue of being part of the system (aka the Democratic party), Kucinich, though admittedly a longshot, would have a chance at beating Bush if he could get the Democratic nod. Coming from the belly of the beast, so to speak. Also, unlike Nader, he actually has plans for how to right the wrongs as opposed to complaints without any substantive solutions.

He’s no spoiler and he in no way is a “wasted vote,” especially not in the primaries.

His participating in the Democratic Primary process is a very necessary thing and, if you believe in what he represents, it’s exactly the time to show your support for him – publicly, loudly and financially.

Not after Dean or Kerry snag the nomination before half the country even gets to weigh in (conventional wisdom currently says that the nominee will likely be decided after the first Super Tuesday, March 2, and definitely by the following on March 9).

Not after Americans decide they’d rather have the real thing instead of some watered-down version of a Republican like Leiberman, and re-elect Bush.

It’s exactly what the primaries are supposed to be about: several candidates vying for the privilege to represent the Democratic party, explaining where they stand, what they’d propose and how they’d serve. It’s about people voting for who best represents them and their beliefs, not who the media says has the best shot to win.

The only reason Kucinich is a long shot is that many of the people who believe in what he’s saying don’t have the guts to stand with him and make it happen. It’s a calculated risk and people are afraid of the math. It challenges the status quo and that means going with the unknown. It requires that one actually believe in something for once in their lives and, more importantly, act on that belief.

Of course, this isn’t the sixties anymore, when people had less to lose and more to gain. When injustice was too in-your-face to ignore. When standing for something meant, if necessary, dying for something. When the possibility for a better future outweighed the convenience of a could-be-worse today.

This is the 21st century and we are now the land of McDonald’s and Starbucks and Wal-Mart and the NY Yankees and five conglomerates owning everything and, by extension, everybody, and health care that puts profit before people, and SUVs powered by the blood of our young, and a government that runs over the people instead of by and for them…

and I can’t help but want to fucking scream myself hoarse but for the fact that I know few are listening, and even fewer give a damn.

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