Let the People Decide: Americans Influence the Next Four Years
Published: Monday, October 15, 2012
Updated: Monday, October 15, 2012 16:10
Whether people consider themselves red or blue, conservative or liberal, Democrat or Republican, a sense of nationalism has swept the country. Nationalism is defined as devotion and loyalty to one’s own nation. This devotion is being executed by citizens of the United States who are joining together to watch debates, voice their opinions as well as persuading the “undecided” of our country to vote for their particular candidate.
This effort is what politics in the United States are all about. The last presidential debate had the highest viewer ratings only behind the vice presidential debate between Joe Biden and Sarah Palin in 2008. Americans are devoted to this year’s election and many of us are involved in some way or another. Some people are more serious than others, but the involvement is still impressive.
During the presidential debate, many younger people participated by watching the live meeting between President Obama and Mitt Romney. Drinking games were played throughout the country. This may not be the ideal form of political involvement, but it was still a way to get younger people to watch the influential presidential debate. Facebook statuses and tweets on Twitter blew up during and after the debate with individuals casting their opinions on who won the debate and who had the best, crucial one-liners. It is truly remarkable to see all the support for both candidates as well as a large number of the population not agreeing with either candidate’s opinions and policies.
I have noticed that it is almost impossible to have a conversation without someone mentioning this year’s election. Many people want to know candidate’s policies, opinions on the debates and, of course, who everyone is voting for. And this is not just for the presidential debate; citizens of North Dakota have another much contested race for the open Senate seat.
The race between Rick Berg and Heidi Heitkamp has also accrued popularity from voters across the state. The constituents would like to see a debate between Heitkamp and Berg. The heightened involvement in the presidential election is influencing other races between Democrats and Republicans to be just as hectic. The excitement of these races increases the likelihood of Americans casting their votes in November.
Participation and devotion in this year’s elections holds a positive influence on the nationalism of our country. No matter what political party Americans vote for, we are all taking part in influencing the direction of our nation in the next four years. It is crucial that we all take part in the privilege to vote. This is a right that many Americans have fought for and it is our duty to honor their effort and sacrifice by casting our vote on the political candidates we believe will benefit the United States of America over the next four years. As Abraham Lincoln declared, “The dogmas of the quiet past are inadequate to the stormy present. The occasion is piled high with difficulty, and we must rise with the occasion. As our case is new, so we must think anew and act anew.”
Lukas is a senior majoring in political science