Having thrown qualifications out the window, the presidency is now open to anyone who wants it
Prior to our most recent presidential election, prevailing wisdom held that our president needed to be among the brightest, most intelligent people among us, someone with proven leadership skills and a track record at adequately addressing the severe issues that face our nation. More often than not, we’ve looked to people with advanced degrees from Ivy League schools, people who have served in some lower office of public service, and someone who can be respectful of the diversity that composes our country.
What we have apparently decided, however, is that those qualifications no longer matter. We’ve elected a president who holds none of those qualifications and while half the nation trembles in fear, with good reason, the other half is drooling with the anticipation of political bloodshed. If such is the future of the United States presidency, then I see no reason to disregard the constitutional requirements for age and natural citizenry and open the process up to everyone. Let everyone run for president!
Already, three people have declared their candidacy for 2020. Kanye West, who might very well be the urbanized version of the current president-elect, announced that he would be running for president in 2020 before this most recent election was even held. He says he serious about it, too. Hey, at least he follows through on things. He said he was going to become a fashion designer. He’s staging shows. Maybe one day he’ll actually learn design. If The Great Pumpkin can be president, then I suppose Kanye is about as equally qualified.
Then, following last week’s results, both Ron Perlman and Chris Rock announced they would be running in 2020 as well. If they’d drop the age requirement, perhaps pseudo-model Gigi Hadid would run as well. Lord knows she’s been in about every other role her daddy’s money can buy her. Everyone run for president! You and I should run for president! It’ll be fun and we’re all just as qualified, perhaps even more so, as the bag of taco seasoning we’ve just elected.
The Upside Of Running For President
Ya’ gotta admit that there are some pretty cool benefits to running for president. You get to be first in line at the buffet. You don’t have to carry money because someone else always picks up the tab. There’s always someone standing around waiting to drive you where ever you want to go. No one complains when you raid the ‘fridge at 3:00 in the morning. In fact, everyone else who’s still awake is likely to join you. Running for president definitely has its perks.
What’s most important about running for president, though, is being able to address the issues you feel are being ignored or improperly handled by the current administration. Now, we have to admit that there is no way to tell exactly what those issues might be by the time we get to 2020, assuming we actually survive the next four years. However, based on the personnel choices the president-elect has already made, we can make some pretty good guesses as to what might be at the top of our list. I won’t attempt to speak for anyone else, but if I’m running for president in 2020, my campaign is likely to be based upon the following issues:
- reinstituting real, actual science in schools
- telling everyone who was kicked out that they can probably come back now, if they want
- filling presidential appointments with women because they’ve proven they’re better at running things than old white men
- restoring funding for Planned Parenthood, NASA, and other critical programs that were defunded
- restoring civil rights for everyone, regardless of race, religion, or sexual orientation without exception
- eliminating laws based on religious morality; go naked if you want, buy alcohol when you want, no one’s worship day is more important than any other, and completely reconfigure our attitude toward drugs
- full healthcare coverage for everyone, without exception
- and, borrowing a plank from Vermin Supreme’s platform, a pony for everyone who wants one
The Downside Of Running For President
Of course, not everything about running for president is sunshine and roses. There are plenty of serious issues with which a president is plagued. I mean, we’ve all seen the before and after pictures of every president. One enters looking young and healthy and leaves looking old and haggard. There’s a reason that happens. The presidency is not an easy job. Many of the people who have occupied the oval office admit that they did not realize the full scope of the job until they got there.
Foreign relations are always a big issue for anyone running for president and we’ve seen the challenges that occur when a president does not handle them correctly. Making that challenge all the more difficult is the fact that what is “correct” is not always obvious until after the fact. There is a lot of second-guessing that goes on in politics and many times it is a coin toss as what the right decision might be. Understanding different cultures, having the patience to negotiate, and being firm without being insulting are traits that many Americans don’t have. Running for president means having to cultivate those traits quickly so as to not appear weak.
Perhaps the biggest downside to running for president, however, is knowing that everyone else is going to say very mean things about you. We all know that not everything we see on Facebook is true, but that doesn’t mean it’s not going to get spread around like soft butter. People who disagree with someone’s political opinions too often go full-troll on everyone else with dialog that could be considered slander if someone wanted to really push the issue. One has to weather the nastiness, however, in order to keep the dialogue open.
The president-elect’s campaign chair has hinted that those who say mean things about the new president had better “watch out.” He’s even said that he’s going to sue those who speak out against him. Whether he actually does that or not remains to be seen, but just having that threat out there changes the discourse and removes a valuable part of the conversation. Running for president means having a thick enough skin to not let the opposition gain any ground with their meanness.
Focusing on what’s important
The cat. Focus on the cat. Don’t be distracted by the attractive young woman or that cozy looking fireplace. The cat is what’s in focus.
So it is with running for president. There are always distractions and it is very easy to get caught up in the distractions and lose focus for what is really important. All the attention paid to email servers in this election was a distraction; there was no substance nor relevance to anything involved in that conversation. Yet, it became a dominant factor and might have turned the outcome of the election. Focus, people, focus.
There are always distractions during a presidential campaign. Stop and think about your life. What could serve as a distraction to keep people from paying attention to your platform? All those nude pictures, perhaps, could be a distraction. Fraternizing with people the previous administration has expelled could be a distraction. Pretending to be a fashion designer when you don’t have the faintest clue about being a fashion designer could also be an incredible distraction.
Focus. The same thing that makes a good photograph is what makes a good presidency: Focus, composition, and having enough light that people can see what the hell you’re doing. If we’re all going to run for president, and the more I think about it the more I think we should consider that option, then we’re all going to have to focus more on what’s important, stop running around protesting every little thing and work at composing a better world. Block what’s bad, prevent it from becoming law, and make sure everyone knows what’s really going on. Control your own message rather than letting the abstract media do it for you.
Yeah, we all need to run for president in 2020. At the very least, we all need to think about doing that. Even if we don’t all run, we’ll be better off for having considered the matter.
And we can’t let Kanye win. Seriously.