LeBlanc: Decide for yourself

I don’t know about all of you but I am tired of the press using their position to try to convince the public to vote in a certain way by trying to make them feel stupid. I can not stand when a writer makes the claim that, if you vote a certain way, you must be uninformed.

This past week, I looked at articles in all sorts of papers including USA Today, the New York Times and many others. One writer claimed that anybody who voted for Bush must be “uninformed” because they were voting for a war-loving, self-serving individual who cannot be trusted. In the very same paper, I read an article saying that Kerry cannot be trusted because he has flip-flopped on so many votes in the past, so anyone who votes for him must be “uninformed.” Finally, I also read an article that said voting for a third party is a wasted vote. Only an “uninformed” person would vote that way. Obviously there is something wrong here.

If you were to take all of these arguments as truth, then every voter in America must be “uninformed.”

But wait, it still gets better, because in another article I read that people who choose not to vote are the dumbest of all. So now every single citizen of America is uninformed. And this just does not go for the national media; there are such writings here at Villanova. In the last issue of this paper, an article appeared saying anyone who voted for Bush was uninformed because he was evil. He also said that Bush promotes negative campaigning while Kerry does nothing of the sort. Voting for Nader, he said, was stupid because it cost Gore the last election and will end up costing the deserving winner the election again. People who vote this way were claimed to be lazy and taking the easy way out.

Let me see … where do I start? I take exception to the fact that he called all people who would vote for Bush uninformed. I also have no clue where he gets the idea that Kerry doesn’t do any negative campaigning. You turn on the TV for five minutes and you see a commercial bashing Bush from the Kerry campaign. In all fairness, the same is true of the Bush campaign too. I also don’t like the fact that he told all people who choose to vote for Nader that, because they feel he is the best for the job, they are taking the easy way out.

Now I have no problem with trying to convince people to vote one way or the other. However, when you lie and insult people to do so, that’s when you cross the line. So everybody, I ask you to ignore all the negative journalism going around for both sides. On your own, try to gain enough information to make what you feel is the correct decision. And come Election Day, if you choose to vote, which is your American right to choose to or choose not to, go into the poll and make your decision based on whom you feel is best for the job. Not because of some punk journalist who called you uninformed if you vote this way or that way. I myself will probably vote for Bush because I think he is better for the job than Kerry, but I will not call anyone who votes for Kerry uninformed. If a person thinks Kerry is better for the job, how can I call them stupid? The answer is that I can’t and I won’t. I will merely say that they are making their own informed decision and will applaud them for doing so. Politics would be better if more journalists did the same thing.