False Dichotomy

Here’s my latest article for Nailed Magazine:


I’m not a Democrat even though I voted for Obama twice. I’m for gay marriage, civil rights, a woman’s right to choose. Many of the friends I made in my fourteen years in the military tell me this makes me a liberal. I criticized both Bush and his father and I believe our health care system needed an overhaul, but that doesn’t mean I should be pigeon-holed. Why do I have to be categorized for voting according to my beliefs? It’s not my fault the Republicans have had their heads up their asses most of my adult life. Today in the land of the free we’re not very free when it comes to who governs the land.

The fact that we only have two choices when we vote for our leaders reminds me of Orwell’s Newspeak in 1984. “Newspeak was designed not to extend but to diminish the range of thought, and this purpose was indirectly assisted by cutting the choice words down to a minimum.” But today, instead of cutting down our choice of words the government has eliminated our choice of ideals. Today we’ve become happy with voting against scoundrels even if that means voting for lesser ones. Those of us who vote, many times get a sense of gratification voting out of spite. This is a distraction to keep us from being outraged. It only appears we’re given a choice, but a real choice would mean several qualified candidates. Instead we end up with only two real choices: one Republican and one Democrat.

Today, the GOP is frantically searching for an identity like a teenager from a broken home, and just like that kid they tend to fall in with the wrong crowd. Many of their members are sexist bigots or incredibly proud idiots. They put Herman Cain up as their best bet to win the last election and he took the lead, until four women came forward claiming sexual harassment, and Ginger White said she had a 13 year affair with him that ended right before his presidential campaign. When the Cain Train derailed, Newt Gingrich took the lead, a man who was disgraced just years before and forced out as the Speaker of the House. Rick Perry showed himself to be a homophobe, and look at Michele Bachmann’s comments on just about anything. She insinuated that the Swine Flu only happens because there is a Democrat in the White House. She told the world that, “there isn’t even one study that can be produced that shows that carbon dioxide is a harmful gas.” She’s even stated that the natural disasters we’ve suffered recently were sent from God because of government overspending.

Bill Clinton was impeached even though at the time he was a lame duck and acquitted a year later. Now when he speaks at events no one seems to remember the embarrassment he caused our country on the global stage. I can’t stand listening to Nancy Pelosi’s hypocrisy. Al Gore was a lump without personality or presidential gravitas. Kerry was milquetoast.

The political system today consists of both parties putting a bunch of candidates up to be eliminated one by one as their scandals and idiocies come to light and then we’re left with only two choices. If the government made a law that forced a group of people to only pray to either Christ or Muhammad even the Christians and Muslims would fight it. Shit, man, if the government only gave two options to what kind of car we drove or cell phone we talked on we’d start a rebellion. Then why the hell do we only get two choices for the person who runs the world?

I can be unapologetic for believing in affordable healthcare while believing socialism is a failed system of government. It’s my choice to believe civil rights extend to all of our population while wanting limited government. I am completely for a woman’s right to choose and I believe it’s my right to own the same type of rifle I carried during war time. I support the free market but hate corporations. All of this is my right as a United States citizen. If you don’t agree that’s great. That’s what makes a democratic republic work.

This country, our country, has been synonymous with freedom since its inception. I have over a thousand choices of what to watch on television. I can choose between seventeen different types of drugs to make my penis erect, but I only have two choices for the president of the United States of America. Bald men can choose to have hair, flat women can choose to have big tits, the choices are endless, that is unless you’re talking about who is going to run the world. Then you only have two choices and whatever choice you make becomes your identity.

Even though this country was founded by and for the people with the intent of being a collection of open-minded, freethinking, liberated states where the citizens have freedoms the rest of the population of this planet can only dream of, today we only have two choices when it comes to who leads us. It doesn’t have to be that way. Maybe if we can all learn that then we can stop the polarization in our government. Instead of seeing the person across the table, or the aisle, as a Republican or Democrat and start seeing them as a person, we can stop all this stupid shit going on and get this country back on track. Despite the best attempts of the assholes in charge we still have the potential to be the best country on this planet.

By Sean Davis

Sean Davis is the author of The Wax Bullet War, a Purple Heart Iraq War veteran, and the winner of the Legionnaire of the Year Award from the American Legion in 2015 and the recipient of the Emily Gottfried Emerging Leader, Human Rights award for 2016. His stories, essays, and articles have appeared in the the Ted Talk Book The Misfit’s Manifesto (Simon and Schuster), Forest Avenue Press anthology City of Weird, Sixty Minutes, Story Corps, Flaunt Magazine, The Big Smoke, Human the movie, and much more.

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