Why Voting Your Conscience Doesn't Actually Work

by Saturday, July 23, 2016
I have a difficult message to send. Pretty sure it's gonna make some people pretty angry at first, but I really hope that it will be read and considered. I do my best to share any message I have passionately, but with facts and resources to back it up. I am not forwarding a meme here, I am speaking from the heart and mind. Thanks in advance for reading.

(Edited to add: I have been getting some accusations of being a "Hillbot". For one, that is a childish term and I think we should be more respectful of people who may not share our political reviews. Secondly, I have been an ardent, vocal, and active Bernie supporter, volunteering at the local office, volunteering at the local caucus, and advocate online at every opportunity. This is not something I take lightly, and I am not a Clinton apologist by any stretch. So please read with an open mind and don't decide you know me from a single online post. This is carefully considered and deeply personal to me on many levels.)

Bernie supporters/disillusioned Dems who say they are voting third party because they "refuse to vote against their conscience" are admitting:

a) they don't understand how voting works in America
b) they honestly feel their personal comfort in knowing they "voted their conscience" is more important than the greater good of their fellow citizens.

Newsflash: Trump is far far worse than Hillary--whatever your personal collection of progressive issues may be, I promise you Trump has it covered in spades and WORSE:

  • War? Worse, including killing innocent women and children, and bragging about being willing to commit war crimes against allies, check.
  • LGBTQ issues? Worse, wants to overturn Obergefell/rights to marry, check.
  • Income equality? Not even on his radar and wants to gut social programs to boot, check.
  • Racial equality? Do I even have to spell it out for you?
  • Want a Supreme Court which will represent your values? Justices outlive presidencies, friends, and you don't want who the GOP will put into the office deciding our law for 10+ years do you?
  • Shall we get into his bigoted, women's-rights-hating VP running-mate while we're at it...?
The list goes on.
And because Spoiler Effect* is a real thing, if you don't vote one of the two major parties, you are actually empowering the candidate you agree with the least. If you believe as I do that Trump is the worst danger to America and the planet (yes, not hyperbole from an environmental and anti-war standpoint), then voting third party is shooting yourself and your country in the foot.

(*Here is what is wrong with how voting works in America, and I have linked you in at 5 minutes where you can see why voting third party creates the spoiler effect and is basically a vote for the worst for your values. https://youtu.be/s7tWHJfhiyo?t=300 )

Voting third party does not "send a message" to the Dems. Believe me, the two party system is working as intended, and as anyone who saw the votes split by Perot and Nader in their respective races, it doesn't send any message or change the system to vote third party. I encourage you to read more about it from FairVote, an organization devoted to changing the system:

If you really want to change the world, start by holding your nose and vote Dem--vote strategically, not emotionally; vote the platform, if not the person--to control the blast radius of this shit show of an election. Trump would be far far worse. Unconvinced? Read more at this link with some of Trump's Greatest Hits. https://www.facebook.com/notes/shay-moore/stop-trump-the-facts-part-1-war-and-human-rights-violations/10153920359189195

Then turn all your indignant energy (which believe you me, I share with you!) to changing from the ground up. That means election reform at your local level, voting for true progressives at every viable opportunity, pressuring your representatives for election reform, demanding third party organizations to get their shit together (Green Party, I'm looking at you and your lack of ANY respectable cohesiveness across the nation), and many other options that will actually make a difference.
( http://www.fairvote.com has you covered with ways to get involved.)

Why do you think Bernie, a man who has been in politics longer than some of us have been alive, has endorsed Hillary/the Democratic nominee? Because he already knows what every progressive needs to understand: the GOP nominee is a death sentence for all the values we hold dear. Bernie has put his energy behind the only other viable alternative at this time, because he understands how politics work, and he is doing what he must--what we *all* must--to do the most damage control. He knows endorsing anyone else or running third party will actually divide the vote, creating the spoiler effect, and get Trump into office.

If you ever believed in Bernie--his clear heart, his keen mind, and extensive experience in the real world of politics--you need to listen to him now. Our future depends on it.

Some links for further reading:
A three part series of Trump's Greatest Hits (ie why we need to keep this monster out at all cost, shared above but worth linking again in case you missed it)

Hillary is Fundamentally Honest & Trustworthy (despite what the rest of the media has been feeding you)

And don't miss this handy chart showing the most truthful and least truthful candidates. You won't be surprised who is the worst, but did you know who's among the best?

Fostering Pups!

by Wednesday, July 06, 2016
I have to say, now on our second (and third) foster experience, it has been great so far. We have been lucky, I think, with the animals who have come to stay with us. Layla was perfection, and it was really really really hard to let her go (twice!). But we stuck it out and got these two little muffins, Celeste (Cece!) and Oscar.

And I love them. Like, all over again I am madly in love.

Oscar is SO not the kind of dog I fall for, but he found his way into my heart immediately with his enthusiastic tail wagging, expressive face, and just plain BRAVERY! He was found tied to a freeway fence so tightly they had to cut the rope off. He was being stalked by large street dogs ready to attack, and was saved just in time. How an animal so cruelly abused and abandoned is so sweet and trusting...? He's just so freaking resilient and joyful, tons of personality, all in about a 6 pound body!

And Cece...who couldn't fall in love with her? Her exotic look with one brown eye and one bright splotted blue sucks you right in. She loves to play, but is also so mellow and loves to be held and cuddled, resting her head on your shoulder like you've known her all along, even if you just met her. She will curl up into a little fluffy ball and snore quietly as you pet her.

But the best part? I don't want to adopt them.

That sounds weird, I know, but hear me out. With Layla, we were so in love we wanted to keep her. Letting her go was misery because we could see her being a part of our family so comfortably. I was afraid that the future of fostering would go two ways: either we would love them and letting them go would be heartbreaking over and over, or we would not love them (or worse, have to actively harden ourselves to them) so we could let them go with happiness at finding them a new home. Well, it turns out that yeah, I can fall head over heels in love with these sweet furbabies AND can be excited to help find them a new forever home. It is a relief to know that I can be a foster who loves the animals entrusted to her. Because the alternative was bumming me out.

So news flash: love these pups! They are just the bees-knees! And I can't wait to get them adopted out so they can spread their magic to someone lucky enough to have them in their lives!


On this blog I share my personal posts about cooking and knitting, travel and other musings; while I will blog about dance-specific topics over on the Deep Roots Dance blog:

I hope you will enjoy both my sites. Thanks for visiting!
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