Stronger Together

Dear Fellow Bernie Supporters,
I’m angry. Throughout this entire democratic primary I, like many of my friends, have been a staunch Bernie Sanders supporter. As a first time voter, I felt he stood for what was important to me, and gave me and many other young voters a voice and a sense of enfranchisement. I felt passionately throughout that, based on values and platforms, Bernie Sanders was the best choice for the Democrats, and for the country. So passionate in fact, I wrote an Op-Ed explaining point by point why I felt this way, and gave evidence supporting my positions. Yet, throughout this Primary experience, I, like numerous others, felt as if ” the deck was stacked against us”. It seemed as though the Democratic Party looked down on us, and didn’t take us seriously. Our feelings and concerns were labeled as “paranoia” and dismissed as sour grapes over Hillary Clinton winning the primaries. However, we recently received conformation of what myself and millions of other Bernie supporters long suspected, the Primary process was tilted. The DNC was working in favor of the Clinton campaign. They did resent Bernie Sanders and his supporters. We weren’t paranoid. Now, it would be easy to take this information and say, “To Hell with Hillary Clinton and the Democrats! They didn’t want us, they can’t have us.” Many may subscribe to the ‪#‎NeverHillary‬ mindset and stay home in November, or maybe vote for Dr. Jill Stein of the Green Party. I won’t lie, since the Democratic Primary ended I have wrestled with the decision of whether to join the ‪#‎ImWithHer‬ train or to “stick it” to the DNC and vote for Jill Stein. However, the stakes of this election have changed. They’ve heightened. I’ve finally realized that if I truly stand for what I say I do, and I want to see the country move more to the left, by not supporting Hillary Clinton in November the only person I’d be sticking it to is myself.
In a perfect world this would be different. There would be a third option to throw our support behind, that better reflected what we wanted to see in a candidate. But we do not live in a perfect world. By now that much at least should be clear. The reality is that there are only two people who have any semblance of a shot at being our next President, Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. The thing that so many of us liberal Sanders supporters need to realize is that right now our only chance of eventually seeing what we want reflected in policy rests with Hillary Clinton. If Donald Trump is elected, the courts will be as conservative as possible, and 8 years of progress will be steadily chipped away at, unwound over the course of his presidency. It’s time to decide whether we Sanders supporters are about instituting real change or just saying our peace and easing our conscious.
The time has come to decide. Make no mistake, I am not saying that no one should vote for Dr. Jill Stein. However, if you are a liberal switching your vote to the Green Party just because you don’t want Hillary Clinton to be president, rather than genuinely wanting Jill Stein to be president, you might as well mark down Donald Trump on your ballot. It’s basically the same thing. We don’t have the luxury of not going about this pragmatically. This is our chance to prove to the rest of the country that we are serious about fighting the long fight, and really making a change. It starts here. Display vision and acknowledge the bigger picture. We all love and trust Bernie Sanders, that’s the main reason why so many of said we supported and believed in him. It’s time for that trust we all touted to come to bare. Bernie Sanders is telling us that we have to unite and do what we can to defeat Donald Trump. Do we really trust him to lead us in the right direction, or have we all been blowing smoke this past year? The time has come. I do not personally subscribe to the notion that Hillary Clinton is our enemy, as some of my fellow Bernie supporters do. But for those who do I’d ask you to remember this; “The enemy of my enemy is my friend.” I think we can all agree, we have a common enemy here.
There’s only one-person left who can defeat Donald Trump and that’s Hillary Clinton. She needs our help. Time to pony up.
Skyler Nash