The revolutionary senator from Vermont, Bernie Sanders, has launched his bid for the presidency, vowing to transform our country. As a former presidential hopeful, Bernie is seasoned in the game, possesses an extensive support network, and is shaking up our concept of the “mainstream” as we know it.
Bernie’s platform is one of democratic socialism and emphasizes a grassroots movement. At its core, Sanders’ platform represents an unprecedented shift to restore and revitalize the foundation of this country, which is grounded in the will of the people and expanding the circle of liberty. Unlike 2016, Sanders has household name recognition as well as an extensive donor and volunteer list. He has amassed a network of millions of contributors and raised money in a record-breaking amount of time, which speaks to his magnetic message that appeals to large swaths of the population. Furthermore, his policy ideas occupy a unique space in the current political landscape that gives him tremendous bragging points.
The Sanders campaign proposes policies such as Medicare for All, tuition-free college, and environmental justice, manifesting itself in the Green New Deal. As a Prometheus-like candidate, he takes power from the status quo and gives it to the people of the country. On some level, it seems somewhat disappointing that the wealthiest nation on the planet has embarked on these essential policies for its people. It is a disgrace that Americans have to pay several times more than what their counterparts in other developed nations pay for prescription drugs. Alongside basic affordable healthcare is the question of how we educate our young people, who are integral if we want to shape a sustainable future. And that sustainable future can only be a reality if we have a concrete plan to deal with climate change.
How are people going to actively go against their interest and vote against policies that benefit them and their children? Sanders has the answers. His populist messages are set to do very well with primary voters once the campaign trail heats up. However, unlike 2016 when Bernie was the only diamond in the rough, he is now flanked on all sides by other presidential hopefuls who have adopted many of his ideas.
Like clockwork, this has prompted mass coverage from the mainstream media who try and downplay his significance and, of course, prop up their favorites who align more with their establishment wishes. This was seen clearly when Cory Booker and Amy Klobuchar entered the race for president. Their presence was viewed as electrifying and was met with jubilant reviews and personal endorsements posing as political analysis on major network television stations. A blatant example of this bias was after Bernie raised 6 million dollars in 24 hours, which was met with lukewarm descriptions and even wholeheartedly rejected by columnists at the Washington Post, questioning whether or not this indicated any clout for the Sanders campaign. In a double standard, Kamala Harris’ sizeable haul of 1 million dollars was seen as confirmation of her unmatched fortitude as a Democratic candidate. There is nothing wrong with opinionated pieces to create a healthy discourse of ideas, but when that creeps into actual journalism, it threatens the objectivity of the Fourth Branch of Government.
Attacks on Bernie are not new by any stretch of the imagination. As we speak, Fox News is undoubtedly creating new graphics to smear him as a “radical” and a “communist.” Any time there is opposition, the opponent has to shift its thinking. They now have to take you seriously. The establishment reads the polls, just like supporters of Bernie do, and they understand the growing support for his policies, and that rocks them to their core. Their ability to control and shape the country in their image, whether it be lower taxes for the rich or more wars for the military industrial complex, is coming to a swift end. The 2020 Presidential Campaign season proposes to be a true referendum on the values and direction of the United States. Bernie Sanders has thrown his hat into the ring, created a disturbance and has woken up dormant voters. The revolution has begun, the time is at hand, the dawn is upon us.