After eight years of what seemed like relative political peace, our nation has thrown us a curveball in the form of Donald Trump. Due to an outdated system of representation in the form of the Electoral College, he was declared to be the next POTUS, despite losing the popular vote.
We all know that Donald Trump and his partner Mike Pence have said and done some absolutely horrendous things to make us all feel sick to our stomachs knowing they will soon hold the highest position in our country’s government.
We also know that our political system is run by a bunch of folks who are only invested in their own interests, backed by the ultimate power – money. They are very, very far removed from the ordinary dealings of America’s citizens. Yet they are there to set the tone and provide representation for it’s nearly 320 million residents.
We shouldn’t be shouting “Fuck Trump.” We should be shouting “Fuck the System.”
Trump was successful at rallying enough people and support because he ran as a rogue candidate, against the mainstream system. He was an outsider; and as queer folks, we all know what that is like. Instead of running a candidate against him that was just as anti-establishment, the DNC choose to pit the most commercial and systematic candidate, Hillary Clinton, against him. It was one of the biggest political missteps of all time. And it will cost us dearly for the next four years.
Since 2006, when I was legally able to vote in my first election, I have always voted for third-party candidates wherever they ran. I never could put my full support behind a candidate on either side of the political spectrum, because I am not a binary person. The singular platforms of Republican and Democrat do not appeal to me, nor do they accurately represent the will of all people in this country. The world is not a strictly objective place, and it’s time our political system reflects that.
The contemporary liberal agenda has made us content and docile. They throw us a few bones like gay marriage, universal healthcare, etc, while at the same time allowing capitalism, patriarchy, and white supremecism to thrive. With one hand they create, and the other they destroy. Neoliberalism undermines the democratic process; globalized corporate power exploiting the earth and the poor for their own private interests.
Going forward, I am pledging to stand more firmly behind and push forward a political agenda that is not rooted in the right or the left. Alignment with either of these is in line with assimilation. We need more diverse representation in our governments. More political parties need to be formed at the local level and work their way up to Washington D.C.. We cannot accept political agendas that lack any kind of subjective understanding of the lives they claim to represent. We are too diverse a nation, and we need more representation to reflect that. This election was all about many different groups of people feeling like their voices weren’t heard, that they weren’t represented enough. And how could they be, with just a two-party system?
A movement in the Pacific Northwest has been growing for years. The movement, called Cascadia, has been about building a vibrant bioregional and inclusive social and cultural community. While it has succeeded in fostering connections and a sense of place in this particular region of the United States (stretching from Southern Alaska to Northern California, see map), it has the potential to grow even more. Alignment with Native American people, who have continually been trampled by the US government, is of the utmost importance. We must give them the opportunity to thrive culturally. Environmentalism, bioregionalism, addressing poverty and homelessness, ensuring civil liberties and freedoms, increasing regional integration, and building a support network of local economies and food networks are all essential to the Cascadian Movement.
Succession from the United States and Canada would be the ultimate goal, and while it is a difficult and laborious process, it is not impossible. The ninth and tenth amendments to the Constitution allow for anything not explicitly addressed in the Constitution to be reserved to the states and the people. This includes peaceful secession; the states already have this right. We need to be thinking more outside of the box when it comes to finding liberty, peace, and justice for all. I refuse to be complacent in a political system that only offers me white bread and whiter bread.
“For the master’s tools will never dismantle the master’s house. They may allow us to temporarily beat him at his own game, but they will never enable us to bring about genuine change.” –Audre Lorde
If you are interested in getting involved, a public meeting has been planned to discuss the formation of a Cascadia 501(c)4 political organization, and the creation for a Yes Cascadia ballot campaign in Washington and Oregon. It will take place on November 19th, from 6-8pm, at 407 2nd Ave South, in Seattle. The space was home to the Double Header bar, which is now under new ownership and set to open early 2017.