An educational third-party solution

Written by Susan Mannella on .

The recent polls reveal just how dissatisfied the public is with our politicians and the two-party system. Yet this is a democracy and we are the voters who vote them in. There is more and more support for a third party, but to obtain influence a third party would have to suck up to the special interest groups for campaign funds and outpromise the other two parties.

We do not need more simplistic solutions or rhetoric panicking old folks and stampeding the young and thoughtless. Nor do we need to be bombarded with any more of the expensive campaign advertisements that blossom near elections from politicians crawling out of their snug, warm hiding places.

We have an inexpensive way to front a third party with none of the political defects inherent in a regular political party - an unelectable third party. It would not cost anything, does not require legislative approval or new laws and would end the political pingpong we play where our political process consists of throwing one party out in exchange for another that has no more intention of solving problems than the party we threw out.

This third party would consist of students from the various levels of education to participate in the debates with politicians running for local, county, state and national elections. They would compete for the chance to debate the politicians just as they compete for any extracurricular activity. Students would investigate real issues and real solutions so that even the most sophisticated political liar could not get elected parroting pre-rehearsed sound bites.

It might get off to a bit of a rocky start, but in time there would be truth to politics and a real political education for students. Any organization could sponsor it and any teacher could start it.

Coudersport, Pa.

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