Harm Reduction in Politics and a Message to the Bernie or Bust Movement
This election cycle has been hell for people on the far left of politics in the USA. They’ve gone through a time where Bernie Sanders was on top, only to be torn down shortly after. If you’re a member of the far left, then chances are that you’re not only disappointed by the loss we’ve suffered, but also angry at how the system seems to do everything in its power to stop the movement. That being said, this isn’t the end of the fight. We still have to keep doing everything in our power to get to a better place.
However, despite the fact that we still need to keep doing everything we can, it would seem that there are those in leftist spheres that refuse to vote for a candidate that would be a step up from the current cabinet. This is where the harm reduction part of this article begins, as that’s what I’m most concerned with as a voter this time around. I gave Bernie Sanders my vote when the primary came to my state and he did very well here, but he still lost overall. While that did upset me to the point where I almost became too cynical to think of the greater good, I’ve since thought about others and not just my anger. Joe Biden is not a good candidate. I’m not going to lie to any of you on the left that are here, but I am here to say that you should ensure that he wins. “Why should I do that?” you’re probably asking. Well, the answer is quite simple: we’d have more influence if he wins.
Right now, we have republican control that’s stripping the rights of the LGBT community, encouraging protests during a pandemic, and who are reckless enough to bomb a person on ally-controlled land. We can do better. I know you want to see a complete change, but voting third party proves nothing other than that you’re not willing to help benefit the lives of those effected by the poor decisions of Trump’s presidency, all because you’re angry with how democrats handled things. It’s okay to be angry. It’s okay to criticize Joe Biden and put pressure on the democratic party to get where we need to go. However, due to circumstance, you have to roll with the punches and do what helps the most people in the foreseeable future. Harm reduction is important, because if we get four more years of Trump, then the rights of me and the people I care about are going to continue being taken away slowly. In my state, the republicans are trying to get same-sex marriage revoked. We are actively losing progress with this presidency and I’m not willing to just sit here and take it.
As we near the general election, we need to assess what we can do with what we have. We’ve been putting people in power who do want change as we do and that’s a good start, but we have to keep getting out there and pushing for these changes. If Sanders would have won, we’d still have to do groundwork and bolster our state politics with other leftist politicians. I’m not of the mindset that a violent revolution is what we need, because it isn’t. I don’t want war on the streets. I want to improve on the lives of the people with the least amount of bloodshed as possible. So, to make that change happen, you have to be involved in local politics and participate in discussions with others. We have to win people over instead of just preaching our opinions to like-minded individuals.
Do you want to see capitalism dismantled? Then by all means, get out there and advocate for a system that you find ideal. Inform people on what it really means to be a leftist and what your world looks like. Some people will disregard it as fantasy and others will actively attack you for your views, but another significant amount will look at what you say and join by your side.
Our fight is never over until the world is how we imagine it should be. One politician wasn’t going to change that, and we should be like Bernie Sanders and continue to do everything in our power to help our nation out. You work with what you have, just like many in this movement have done in the past. Stay strong and keep working toward that bright future you envision.