For those of us who would rather set ourselves on fire than vote for Romney, we might find ourselves forced to vote for the lesser of two evils. I mean, lets be honest – Obama aint done shit to help Black America unless you count his healthcare bill (and even that wasnt our first chice – remember Public Option?)
This leaves us American voters with two choices: President Obama and his dufus of a V.P., or Romney/Ryan – the duo of doom.
Or does it?
A few weekends ago,, I caught the Wright on the Edge Radio Show (host Wendy Wright on WOL radio, Washington, D.C.) where one of the topics of discussion were alternative political parties. Some of these parties I had never heard of, but they are apparently growing in political influence without major corporate backing. For those of us who dont like either the Democratic or Republican parties, but stil want to particioate in the political process, this article offers several viable alternatives, and includes a tool to decide which is most aligned with your political disposition.
You might think that Third Parties are irrelevant or don’t hold any sway, but that’s changing. Third Parties have always been a major part of the United States political party system and they play many major roles in politics. The term Third Party in the United States is used to denote any political party that is not one of the two major parties (Democratic Party and Republican Party). These third parties stand by their own certain beliefs, usually based strongly around one or a handful of issues, and have their own strong and centered ideology.
Political parties can be classified under a few labels such as; Right Wing, Centrist, Left-Wing, Libertarian, Ethno-Nationalist, and single-issue/protest-oriented political parties. Given their small numbers and low representation, some of these political parties have done quite well in U.S. elections.
Of all the parties outside of the Two-Ring Circus, you might be the most familiar with is the Libertarian Party. Their platform is simple; they support individual rights over the power of the state – in every sense of the word. Their agenda has been largely advanced by Ron Paul (a former Libertarian Party member, although he is a registered Republican), and the Libertarian Party’s platform opposes government intervention in the economy. According to the party platform “The only proper role of government in the economic realm is to protect property rights, adjudicate disputes, and provide a legal framework in which voluntary trade is protected.”
Yes, Libertarians support drug legalization, prostitution, gambling, removing all restrictions on homosexuality, the right to keep and bear arms, and complete personal freedom. The Libertarian Party’s platform states: “Government does not have the authority to define, license or restrict personal relationships. Consenting adults should be free to choose their own sexual practices and personal relationships.”
You may have also heard of the Peace and Freedom Party of California (Eldridge Cleaver and Cynthia McKinney are two of the most notable past candidates that were nominated by the party). According to their website, “The Peace and Freedom Party is an open, multi-tendency, movement-oriented socialist party. We are united in our common commitment to socialism, democracy, feminism and unionism and our common opposition to capitalism, imperialism, racism, sexism and elitism.”
Everyone has heard of the Communist Party, but many aren’t familiar with its widespread membership here in America. The Communist Party U.S.A. is a Marxist-Leninist party for the working class with factions ranging from the Workers Party, a Marxist-Leninist group with a “pro-social agenda”, and the Workers World Party, to the Progressive Labor Party, and the World Socialist Party of the United States. If you have been a reader here for a while, you are probably well aware of the intimate ties between the Communist Party and African Americans.
Ideology-Specific Political Parties
As I mentioned before, most third parties focus on a single issue. Their idea is that by adding political clout to their cause, they can raise awareness and sway larger parties to support legislation and policy that favor those specific issues. These parties can be religious, social, racial, or sexual. For example, the Pansexual Peace Party is a Wiccan based party that supports peace, freedom, and human sexuality. The Labor Party‘s sole platform is based on workers’ rights, and they believe that everyone in the United States is entitled to a job. And the Constitution Party seeks to limit federal government according to the Constitution and based on Biblical law.
Parties like the Alaskan Independence Party, Hui Kalai’aina in Hawaii, and the DC Statehood Party all advocate complete separation from a federal government and independence. While these parties tend to be small, some are as popular and influential as many larger non-profit and lobbyist groups.
The America First Party is a paleoconservative third party, paleoconservatives stress tradition, limited government, civil society, anti-colonialism, anti-corporatism and anti-federalism. It seeks to eliminate certain cabinet departments within the executive branch, and therefore to lead to a smaller federal government. It also strives for religious freedom, and expression in public, and to repeal the 16th amendment, dealing with taxes.
The Freedom Socialist Party is a feminist socialist organization, advocating “a genuine workers’ democracy.” It has a revolutionary feminist philosophy and views the struggles of women throughout the century as part of the struggles of the working class. It is a politically Trotskyist party, and they look to oppressed sectors of society to provide leadership and start a revolution.
The Green Party is an association of parties which value “ecological wisdom,” non-violence, and feminism, among other values. It emphasized environmentalism, non-hierarchieal participation democracy, social kustice, and respect for diversity, peace and nonviolence. The green party’s platforms criticize any corporate influence or any type of corporate control over the government, media, and American society as a whole.
And of course, there is the National Socialist White People’s Party formerly called the American Nazi Party, and best known as The Republican Party (lol).
Finding A Third Party Thats Right For You
Finding a political party that is right for you can be both easy and hard. The process seems pretty simple, you find a political party that has your ideas and beliefs and you join them. (If you have no idea what your personal political beliefs are, try I Side With, and app and quiz that can help you pin down the party most aligned with your beliefs.) Third parties are very specific with their ideologies and goals, and honestly some can be quite extreme. Therefore, choose your side carefully.
Many Third party’s are also unstable and change based on the current issues of the day, and sometimes their beliefs might change and go against yours. It is always important to stay up to date with current issues, and monitor the political party of your choice under a close radar.
The best and easiest way to choose a Third Party that’s right for you will be to categorize them and choose where you stand in ideologies of the main sections.
Whatever your stand may be, based on your beliefs in the issues followed by the sections, there are subsections which represent the actual parties which are more specific, and singular in their ideologies. Once you have found the political party of your choice, you are now on your way to a interesting political experience, and battles to push your party’s beliefs forward and get seats in government positions.