Dear Jack: I May Have “Wasted My Vote” on a 3rd Party Candidate, but At Least I Actually Voted and Have Peace about It

5 years, 11 months.

Dear Jack: I May Have “Wasted My Vote” on a 3rd Party Candidate, but At Least I Actually Voted and Have Peace about It

Dear Jack,

Over these past couple of months, you have curiously been listening to Mommy and I occasionally discuss Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. You have definitely been interested in learning about how the upcoming election will determine our next President.

You’ve gone to sleep to the sound of all 3 of the Presidential Debates, as your bedroom is right around the corner from our TV.

I think it’s particularly interesting that you have witnessed Mommy and I sincerely try to figure out who to vote for. You are not being raised in a specifically Democrat nor a Republican household.

Instead, I feel that Mommy and I have legitimately been trying to make the right decision; not based on an allegiance to a certain political party, but instead, based on which candidate we truly believe will be the best leader for our country.

As the debates have been on, I’ve listened to some things Donald Trump has said, and I’ve turned to Mommy and said, “Okay, I totally agree with what he just said.”

But then just a few minutes later, I would say the same thing about what Hillary Clinton just said.

And the opposite is true as well: I just as much told Mommy how I disagreed with certain statements both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump made.

For me, I just couldn’t bring myself to make a decision on which major candidate was better, or worse, for the job.

So I decided not to vote for either.

When I came home Tuesday night after participating in “early voting”, Mommy asked with a curioius smile, “So who’d you end up voting for?”

She was surprised to hear me say, “Gary Johnson.”

Not Hillary Clinton. Not Donald Trump. But instead, former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson, the Libertarian.

He embraced the things that I liked about Clinton and Trump, without the things I didn’t like about them.

I know. The likelihood of him winning the election is not great.

I know. I ultimately took a vote away from either Clinton or Trump. But to me, that’s fine- because I didn’t favor one over the other anyway.

My conscience was not okay with me “voting for the lesser of two evils.”

Because that would still have meant I knowingly voted for someone I believed was evil.

In reality, I don’t think either Clinton or Trump are evil. I don’t see things so polarized. I see gray; not just red or blue.

That’s not to say that I believe everyone else should vote for the person I voted for. Instead, I just encourage people to actually vote- for whoever they believe is the right person.

Even Mommy. I have no idea who she will vote for, yet that has no emotional effect over me; nor does anyone else’s vote.

I have voted in every single election since I was old enough. Perhaps that has something to do with the example I saw with my own parents; your Nonna and Papa.

Clearly, I will be raising you the same way. You will see me lead by example, not by simply talking about my political beliefs, but instead, by me faithfully voting for who I personally believe is the best candidate.

It goes back to my letter to you last week about your homework assignment on your opinion whether we should still celebrate Columbus Day.

I found out from your teacher this week that you were the only student in your class who marked “no,” that we should not celebrate the holiday.

That makes me proud. Not necessarily because of the belief itself, but more so because you’re not at all afraid to be the only one to believe, in a society where mainstream society is set in their beliefs.

It’s more than okay to be different.



It Looks Like My Facebook Friends Are Questioning Bipartisanship

This week on Facebook, during the midterm elections, I’ve been watching something refreshing and basically atypical for the social media network: I noticed an overall lack in faith and loyalty to bipartisanship.


Instead of watching people try to convert each other to vote Republican or Democrat, I saw people questioning the American bipartisanship system.

I watched people remind each other through their status updates that it’s irresponsible to simply vote blindly either all Republican or Democrat.

It seems like I’m witnessing a large enough group of the voting population gravitating towards Libertarianism; in other words, it appears people are beginning to vote what they believe is right for our country, not what is simply and easily right for the Republican or Democratic agendas; which are undeniably financed and promoted accordingly; via Fox News or CNN.

If you find yourself already getting apathetic about the next Presidential election because you’re tired of seeing a back and forth game between the two main political parties, there’s a good chance you’re actually closer to being a Libertarian more than anything.

Often it begins with a person saying they no longer care about politics.

However, that apathy is most likely towards uncompromising bipartisanship itself. I think that now, enough people are tired of being forced to pick the candidate they dislike the least; because that’s a horrible way to look at our election process.

I think enough people are realizing that the main 2 candidates are ultimately puppets who are simply endorsing either the Republican (backed by Fox News) or Democratic (backed by CNN) parties.


By 2016, we may not be ready for a Libertarian candidate… but I do believe we’re getting much closer to have that collective mindset as a nation.

I predict that it will begin when a future elected President will identify as a Libertarian, but run as a Republican.

From there, the slippery slope will begin and the door will be open for American Presidents to rely less on bipartisanship to win the election.

And then eventually, it will no longer be considered “just a wasted vote” to endorse a Libertarian candidate.

My prediction for the 2016 Presidential Election: If Ben Carson runs as a Republican against anyone else, he will win. I believe he’s the most “middle of the road” candidate we’ve seen in a long time and people are ready for that.

However, I believe if he doesn’t run, and Hillary Clinton does, that she will win.

This could actually get pretty interesting…

Ben Carson vs. Hillary Clinton 2016

Rad Web Clips to Watch on a Lazy Saturday

In a world of so many weird and funny Internet clips begging for our attention on YouTube, one that started circulating in the fall of 2008 has officially become my all-time favorite.  I proclaim it my favorite “Clip of My Lifetime”.

I suspect that I’m not introducing this to anyone for the first time ever, but my intentions are to be a guide and companion as we try to squeeze this orange for all it’s worth. Please enjoy “Jesus is My Friend” by a rockin’ band called Sonseed:

Well first of all, it’s from 1983 so automatically how can it not be awesome? The lead singer, Sal (whose wife is the piano player), is quite a cartoon squirrel. His token head nod after every over-pronounced verse is so charming. And the pouty look on his face as he delivers each Vacation-Bible-School-line just warms my heart. It’s almost like watching a 4 year-old boy in the form of a 24 year-old Italian man. (Though he was actually 30 when this was filmed.)

I’ve seen cases of some of today’s popular actors either getting their start in Christian entertainment (or resorting to it once they realize their career is over). One theory is that Sonseed’s snazzy lead guitar player is the young Paul Giamatti. (In reality, the guitar player’s name is Frank Franco. That is stellar in itself.) And the drummer may very well be Will Ferrell’s first cousin. Hard to know for sure.

Depending on what day I’m asked, the back-up singers may be my favorite part of this short film. Having his next-door neighbors jump in at the last minute was a plan that came together after all. The first lady it shows is the answer to anyone who says “what’s the worst that could happen?” when being set on for a blind date. You just know things are bound to get awkward. I’m sure she’s got a heart of gold, but she really looks like she should be a SNL character. Did I see her as an extra on Napoleon Dynamite?

Next is perhaps her husband. I can see him being a youth minister on a weekend retreat in Kentucky.  I would definitely want to be in his raft on the white water rafting. Mainly just because a red plastic vest would befit him. Back home he probably had a Petra poster hanging up in his office so that the kids in his youth group could relate to him more.

Excuse me, John Schlitt, lead singer of Petra, but you're kinda standing on the state of New Hampshire... so if you don't mind...

Um, excuse me, John Schlitt, lead singer of Petra, but you're kinda standing on the state of New Hampshire... so if you don't mind...

All I’ve got to say about the next lady is that I’m proud of her for being able to drag her husband out of the house. It takes a positive spirit like hers when being the other half of someone who can’t even memorize one line, “Jesus is a friend of mine”- he’s looking down at the lyric sheet the only time it zooms in on his face.

And then there are the actual lyrics to the song. Universally, the favorite line tends to be “God is like a mounty; He always gets his man”. I’m still trying to figure out what exactly a mounty is and how to spell it. I think it’s a word for a Canadian policeman. But of course the cherry on top of this whole nostalgia-fest is “Zap!!!” That defines the whole video.

When I was first introduced to this video I just watched it repeatedly. The day after I saw it the first time, my wife came home to find me watching it in a trance. There’s just so much to take in. I found a website where I was able to download the whole album. I’ve got it on my iPod now but “Jesus Is My Friend” is the only song of its class, like “Hey There Delilah” on The Plain White T’s CD.

I can’t imagine any YouTube clip ever having more character than Sonseed’s. But I do also highly recommend “The Renewed Mind is the Key” which was recorded from some hokey adult-contemporary Christian musical in Branson, Missouri. That’s only if you want to see a long-haired white guy moonwalk across the stage, then put his hand over his mouth as if he just “passed gas” and is embarrassed by it, the way a 58 year-old woman from Georgia wearing a sundress and matching hat would do. He is accompanied by two women wearing Hillary Clinton pant-suits who have learned a sort of snap-dance from someone who got their degree in “Modern Dance” from a community college.

And here’s the whole song…

And finally, a must-see is the dog that was born without his front legs; yet his owner taught him to walk on his hind legs. If anything ever looked fake but is completely real, it’s Faith, the Hind-Leg Walking Dog.