So, this has been an interesting race for the presidency to this point, huh?
To the right side of the aisle, we have seen approximately 4,921 candidates fall to the wayside as a loud-mouthed, spoiled, billionaire, reality television star has insulted, provoked and basically steamrolled his way to nearly securing that party’s nomination, basically driving a wedge down the middle of the Grand Old Party.
On the left side, we’ve watched as what started as an amicable relationship between the two frontrunners has degenerated into a somewhat-wimpy, but increasingly personal, round of attacks and overly-exhuberant supporters that is threatening to divide that party into two, as well.
Get your popcorn ready, folks. The feature presentation hasn’t even started yet.
In the interests of full disclosure, I am not affiliated with either of the “Big Two” parties. Looking back at my personal voting record since I was first eligible in 1988, I have cast ballots for three Republican candidates, one Democrat, one Libertarian, one Independent and one Ralph Nader.
And a partridge in a pear tree.
Am I disenchanted? Well, yes, particularly with the parties. I’m not a fan of how they try to push specific candidates down our throats under the guise of a democratic primary election, and I’m stark-raving fed up with the games they play in Senate and Congress that see them more concerned with pushing the agendas of their cash-and-power-supplying parties than, well, us.
I have long hoped for “outsider” candidates to come in and knock the parties to their knees, proving to them that the American people are supposed to have the power in this country, and possibly opening their eyes to the fact that we aren’t going to be brainwashed by their rhetoric and scare tactics any longer. We definitely have two of those “outsiders” creating waves in this election cycle, between Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders, and they have both most certainly caused many a party official to ingest more Tums than normal.
They just aren’t the two I was necessarily hoping would emerge, and it’s increasingly looking like only one of them will be on the ballot in November.
And now it appears to be another several months of playing the fun-for-the-whole-family game of “Who stinks less?” Doesn’t that always seem to be the way lately? We slip out of work, go to our polling places, stand in line and go select the individual we think will destroy our nation less than the other one.
It’s disappointing, to say the least. Deadly, to be more dramatic.
The Richmond Times-Dispath contained an obituary on Tuesday, May 15, for a lady by the name of Mary Anne Alfriend Noland. She was a wound-care nurse until retiring, and ended up passing away after a battle with lung cancer. Apparently, she also had a bit of a sense of humor. This, from her obituary:
“Faced with the prospect of voting for either Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton, Mary Anne Noland of Richmond chose, instead, to pass into the eternal love of God on Sunday, May 15, 2016, at the age of 68.”
That is just tremendous.
And this is not the first time someone shared a dying wish regarding the presidential election in the Times-Dispatch. According to a January story in the Washington Post, Ernest Overbey’s obituary in the Times-Dispatch instructed readers to “please vote for Donald Trump” (as well as make donations to the hospital that cared for him). On the flip side was Jeffrey Cohen, who, according to the Post story, said in his obituary in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, “Please do not vote for Donald Trump.”
Both Stephen Ryan of New York and Arnold Mininger of California left final messages of “In lieu of flowers, please don’t vote for Hillary,” and Karl Kmentt of Ohio’s obituary included, “His only regret is NOT being able to vote against Hillary Clinton in the next presidential election.”
These final missiles are not restricted to presidential elections. Any politician is open game, according to the Post story.
The Las Vegas Review-Journal published the obituary of Charlotte McCourt in 2010. She assisted in many campaigns over the years, according to her obituary, but she had one major regret over the years.
“We believe that Mom would say she was mortified to have taken a large role in the election of Harry Reid to U.S. Congress,” read the obituary. “Let the record show Charlotte was displeased with his work. Please, in lieu of flowers, vote for another more worthy candidate.”
Nothing like getting the last word.