Wesley Baucom, Staff Writer

The shivering tension of election season has just started to bud, soon to bloom flowers of discord and divisiveness only to be consumed by flames. These seasons that cultivate only once every four years are the defining moments in our nation’s character, putting a shining mirror right in front of us and showing the world what issues our hearts and minds passionately lean on. However, some of us start to wonder what our vote is even worth now. With Russian interference, emails, and billionaires pulling thick, yet ever entangled strings, the average person looks on as the wildfires of politics burn hellishly, with corruption that slowly bleeds more and more into the limelight. This season is bound to be the brightest yet, and with the Federal Election Commission set in a near inoperable state, the smoke that once covered a thin veil of fairness has blown away.  

The Federal Election Commission (FEC), is an independent agency enacted by Congress in 1974 after the vile 1972 election season, with the goal in mind for monitoring campaign donations and overall transparency. Now, the former Vice-Chair of the Commission Matthew Peterson has resigned, leaving only three members left where there should be six. In fact, the commission has been running with only four members on “hold-over status” because Congress has failed to appoint any new members to the board. Even though President Trump has appointed the same person for a total of four times, Congress still failed to even have a hearing for each appointment. At this rate, with only three dwindling members, the commission can’t even hold proper meetings or investigations. Even if a new member was suddenly appointed, they would still be operating two members short of a full council, and it’s been that way for years. As you can see, the commission is close to closing its doors unless something is done.  

Let’s face the facts: our elections have become a farce, with votes decided on who can play crowds like rockstars—with fiery music and shouting to boot. Our government is as transparent as a black curtain, closing this country off from much-needed light. Without the FEC, little can be done to protect the integrity, if there ever was any, of the elections that are so critical for any freedom-loving American. Then again, is it any coincidence that the only thing keeping elections fair is close to shutting down, right before what might be one of the most volatile elections in recent history? If you’re of the mindset that the 2016 election was one of the more despicable in memory, then just wait until 2020 really heats up. Its flickering flames are just beginning to kindle, yet the smoke is hitting our eyes and tears will begin to flow shortly after. To put it simply, the worst is coming for us. Transparency, integrity and real issues are all fading even more now, but there’s always hope.  

One of the greatest things about America is the power of speech. Even if your vote won’t matter, your voice will. It’s in the American character to never back down despite all odds and to reach the gleaming victory that was once only a pipe dream. Your voice will never be gagged, and will always be what inevitably cools or heats up the wandering heat of politics. If you’re upset, say something and make sure that it’s heard! Don’t take it if you have to, and use it to spark the glory of red, white, and blue. Victory and freedom are the only things that matter in these times, for whatever the cause to win might be. Don’t just whine, scream their ears off! Act in liberty and let them know how you really feel and think. Show the world that the true spirit of America will always lay with: We the People.