Presidential Idol – Wisconsin Edition

Mac Watson

Registering to vote in Wisconsin is easier than almost any other state. You could sleep through all of your classes, Downer-sit for more than two hours and still make it to the polls by 8 p.m.
Lawrence University provides shuttles to the polls for those too lazy to walk three blocks; it literally takes less time and money than driving a friend to McDonald’s to watch him eat. The only additional supplies it requires are a verifiable mailing address and a speck of patriotic duty.
Think about how many times you have been dragged along to time-consuming activities that you did not want to be a part of and that had no pertinence to your life.
If everyone on this campus converted a ninth of their “Facebook time” into “voting time” every month, we would be the most active 1,400 voters in the nation.
No polls serve delicious 4,000-calorie meals, but some candidates may help your ability to eat something other than fast food and Downer now that dining dollars are gone.
Maybe, at the end of the day, an “I voted” sticker and a role in the democratic process is more rewarding than a bloated stomach and salty breath.
Voting is also easy to do because everyone is constantly reminded of his or her privilege to vote. Attractive celebrities cannot be bothered to come to campus to encourage students to do anything except to vote.
Our country is somehow disgusted by attractive, ignorant famous people telling us how to vote, but millions of sports fans tolerate those women who announce games from the sideline and know nothing about athletics.
It seems voting is the only idea so repugnant that most Americans, who waste hours of their lives gossiping about people who get famous for looking good, cannot be convinced by to get out of their La-Z-Boys and check a box for someone they think is okay.
Britney Spears may one of the most searched phrases on Google, but the minute Adrian Brody speaks up, America is offended.
Few people would even try to contest the ease of voting in our great state, with its old socialist leanings and progressive traditions, but unlike the FOX people, our founding fathers did not make it possible to vote over the telephone.
Young people voted for American Idol in record numbers, but this probably had nothing to do with the telephone voting system, and everything to do with the fact that Kelly Clarkson knows more about the Supreme Court than Sarah Palin.
Unfortunately, American Idol voters are also much more accepting than the national electorate, voting for several contestants in their short history who were not old, rich, skinny white men. Both sets of voters, however well-informed, have a soft spot for nice smiles and stylish haircuts — Joe Biden?
Voting has ceased to be an important part of our culture. Even though I have watched every single presidential debate since I could talk and have never seen an episode of American Idol, I can still rifle off the names of American Idol winners more readily than past vice presidents.
We are a nation of People, not The Atlantic Monthly or The New Republic.
All you need to do to combat this consumer culture is read a little unbiased news, then hop on a free shuttle with your student ID and the most recent letter from your grandmother and check a box.
It might even be easier than determining which American Idol contestant sang the best Carole King cover.