Why do people care about politics?

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ravensword

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#1  Edited By ravensword

First of all I know I’m treading dangerous ground by even mentioning politics because it can quickly become a vile and toxic debate. This thread isn’t intended to decide which side is right or wrong or to push a certain agenda. I’m merely asking why people even care about politics or question the importance of caring for it.

Over the past few years I’ve seriously started to question why people care so much about politics and why it really effects there mental health so much. I am 30 years old so maybe it’s just because I’m younger, but I seriously can’t seem to care too much about it. Last time I voted was in 08 and it didn’t effect me one bit who won or lost. It honestly seems like we as individuals have very little say or effect on what happens anyway either way what with electoral colleges and stuff in Congress and so on. And even though I do get bothered by some things, I feel I’m actually a lot more mentally happy for simply not caring. I dont watch the news or anything, if anything is truly important I’ll hear about it from someone else I real life and make a judgement then after I research on the internet.

I’m not saying my way of doing things is the right way, but I just would really like to know what people get out of stressing over this stuff? Most of us have enough every day things to worry about day to day and I dont feel politics and things we don’t have control over should be one of those worry’s personally.

Again please keep comments civil. Thank you.

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Yesiamaduck

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Because politics effects your life in billions of different ways. If youre fortunate enough to ask this question then youre one of the lucky few, a large portion of the world isnt so lucky and if people didnt care about politics you wouldnt be in such a position now.

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alistercat

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#3  Edited By alistercat

Let me give you an example from the UK. Conservatives have been in power for over 8 years and have been dismantling the NHS. As someone who is chronically ill I rely on the generosity of the NHS but every year the quality of service and availability of services goes down.

For my mental health specifically they have severely limited funding so that the mental health service in my area has been stripped and, you might be able to guess, they are being contracted out to a private company instead! What a shocker. Other parties have a better track record and openly better positions on improving the NHS.

I voted both locally and in the general elections for another party, and have always lost in every election I've voted in. I get that makes it feel like you have no power, but the idea that it doesn't matter who you vote for is false. If that were true they wouldn't spend so much time trying to convince you that the evil socialists are coming for your money and guns.

Why you might not notice a difference is because changes take a long time for happen, but they affect the most vulnerable first.

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ravensword

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@yesiamaduck: perhaps I should have edited the title to state “in America” and not so general. Hey n America I don’t see why we should care so much when the electoral college and other things have made individual votes rather useless.

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SethMode

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@ravensword: I mean, what you just stated could be as much of a reason to care MORE about politics than we have, societally, in the recent past. Politics is more than just presidential elections by a pretty large degree, especially in the US.

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Efesell

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Historically everything has always gone super well for cultures who adopt a broad stance of “why bother..?”

Or if you are in a camp where you can do this because it won’t effect you much either way... congratulations.

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ltcolumbo

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This is terrifying.

If nothing else, please realize that local elections determine funding on how much you pay in taxes, school funding, police and fire funding, road repair funding, EMS funding, and many other things that determine of the value and welfare of your property and your actual life.

I also think you need to do a little more research on, well, everything. Voting is the greatest privilege we have.

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north6

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#9  Edited By north6

Local politics probably impact you more than federal, since its more or less impossible to get anything substantive done in the senate these days other than contribute to being divisive. Real compromise and work gets done at town and city meetings, up through state. That for sure impacts you, whether you realize it or not.

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ravensword

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#10  Edited By ravensword

I think most of what I’m speaking about is federal stuff.

I’m also coming at this from someone with anxiety and honestly dont need more stresses in my life and I’d argue that politics has a very negative effect on mental health and we need to weigh the equivalent exchange of what we gain and lose in that exchange.

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Fear_the_Booboo

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Hell I’m Canadian and who get elected in the US ends up impacting my life. I dunno, thinking it does not impact you - especially if you’re young like you say - means you have either a fairly short-sighted view of what an election actually affect or that you’re in an incredibly privileged position.

I’m more on edge about politics discussion lately because my health has been poor in the last few years and the lack of funding in our health system is very evident from all the time I spend in hospitals (lucky I’m Canadian still, I’d be ruined or dead if I were American) this affects me personally and I know other facet of my society affects other people differently. That I don’t see immediate change in my day to day life doesn’t mean the underlying fabric of the society is slowly changing.

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Gensmoth

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#12  Edited By Gensmoth

You're coming at this as someone who is insanely privileged.

Here's a very easy answer for you as to why people care:

The policies of candidates kill people. Their views kill people. Their direct actions kill people. People that are not as privileged as you will die because of the actions of people voted into office. "Not caring" about that isn't an option to those people.

@ravensword said:

I think most of what I’m speaking about is federal stuff.

I’m also coming at this from someone with anxiety and honestly dont need more stresses in my life and I’d argue that politics has a very negative effect on mental health and we need to weigh the equivalent exchange of what we gain and lose in that exchange.

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SethMode

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@ravensword: I mean, you can only control what you take in. If paying a lot of attention to federal politics is a negative influence on you, then you should do what you can to remedy that. However, people care for a whole bunch of reasons on all levels of government and that is rarely ever going to be a bad thing on a societal level.

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Yesiamaduck

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I think most of what I’m speaking about is federal stuff.

I’m also coming at this from someone with anxiety and honestly dont need more stresses in my life and I’d argue that politics has a very negative effect on mental health and we need to weigh the equivalent exchange of what we gain and lose in that exchange.

You dont need to obsess over it, and not being critical, it's just healthy to keep an eye on things. People who don't cant be easily whipped into frenzies and make irrational decisions and thats how you get people like Trump into office. Voting blind can be damaging to your community. I recommend people at the very least try to keep an eye on their local electorates voting history and vote against the ones they dont like

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north6

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@ravensword: Regarding anxiety and national politics, it's hard to argue against what you're saying. Ignorance is bliss here, for sure, especially if you're going to only dip your toe in now and then.

Patriotism is just people putting that nagging anxiety on their shoulders using it to urge them to fight for what they believe is right. Personally, I find its easier to reduce anxiety by taking a good faith approach and trying to understand issues from your political opponent's side, but that's a debate class approach and less popular these days. If you actually understand what their argument is, its far less likely to nag at you, and even less likely for all issues, all the time, to appear to be apocalyptic.

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ghost_cat

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#16  Edited By ghost_cat

Politics affect everyone in America no matter who you are. If you own a business, it can affect your livelihood. If you're rich and like being rich, it can affect how much you can get away with the process. Politics can affect your choices on becoming a parent, or even the hurdles of providing your child the best future. Politics affect many aspects for those who are poor, color and struggling to make it to the next week. Politics affects the safety checks that keep conglomerates from killing too many of its own citizens. And politics affect whether or not we nuke ourselves from existence.

There is no denying that it can seem overwhelming reading all of the headlines of terrible stuff, especially how it all varies greatly (part of it has to do with marketing). But it should matter to you because, no matter how small the degree is, you can make a difference in some way. I believe the best way to ease your way into politics is finding subjects and policies that matter to you and focus on their first, rather than taking on the entire ocean.

Turning a blind eye to politics is basically like having your back facing towards someone who can do whatever he or she wants to you.

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Rejizzle

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Let's try thinking about it from a purely selfish point of view here. You say you suffer from anxiety right? Well, what would you say if I told you that any medication/therapy you take could be subsidised by the government, potentially saving you hundreds of dollars a year? Would that markedly improve your life? Would that lessen the stress in your life enough to offset the stress that having a mild interest in politics creates?

I personally have a prescription for anti-depressants, but as a student with loans to pay off I don't always have the money to afford it. So I vote for politicians whose policy I would benefit from. There are other things to consider of course, but it's a place to start a framework from.

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gunflame88

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Well, I'm mostly not into politics. Thanks to the Internet everyone is such a huge and involved expert on politics nowadays that I feel the world will be fine if I won't care.

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notnert427

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There are definitely issues with the overall negativity of current political discourse, and I generally agree that many people hyperfocus on that to the detriment of themselves and others, but that doesn't mean politics aren't worth caring about. I get that it's not exactly appealing to engage with politics, especially if you're fortunate enough to not have it affect you much, but it does matter.

As for the electoral college, it is truly a bummer that people seem to only "learn" about that when the overall popular vote doesn't fully fall in line with it. However, you can locally vote in the legislators that cast said electoral college votes, so this falls flat as a rationale to not vote or care about politics because you actually can make an impact there, and the confusion is perhaps an argument in and of itself as to why people probably should be a bit more well-versed in politics.

I fall under the category of being privileged enough to not be impacted by politics as much as many, but I'm actively efforting to not be apathetic simply because I can be. There's arguably a degree of social responsibility that makes voting important even on things that don't directly affect you. By that same token, I don't really care for people voting entirely out of self-interest, either. I wish more people would support what they believe is right, above all else.

On a related note, the prevailing "activity" among even those who proclaim themselves political is to just point at a thing they don't like and say they don't like it, which doesn't really do anything. Find like-minded politicians and vote them in or at least vote out the ones that don't represent your values. It takes a bit of research that most people sadly aren't willing to do, but making an informed vote is very worthwhile and something I find personally rewarding as such.

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mellotronrules

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i think if you have any true sense of empathy at all, it's difficult NOT to care about politics. policies have meaningful impacts on countless lives.

you can turn a blind eye, but that's a political choice as much as engagement is.

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sombre

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Because it affects literally EVERYTHING you do in life, ever

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nutter

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#22  Edited By nutter

I hear ya. I was a political junkie from earlier than age 8 until I was about 37.

I find it all fascinating, the policies and the workings of various localities up to federal governments. I find how the private sector reacts fascinating. The fed. The US system of checks and balances. States’ Rights. International policy and diplomacy.

The “politics” of cable news is bullshit and a distraction with no intrinsic value.

I will say that as bullshit politics took over more and more of the headlines, I withdrew. This came to a head with the Trump-Clinton race. I now focus almost solely on town and state politics, and I’m happier for it. Even this focus is more like an hour or reading a day, not a ton.

I think that if you can sit down and have a rational conversation about politics with someone you disagree with, cool. If you get very angry at someone having a differing opinion, maybe find something else to do.

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MerxWorx01

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@ravensword: I have to say one of the main reasons why you might feel you don't have control of the direction the country is going is because there are millions of people like you who feel and act like it doesn't matter and so it becomes true. Regardless of whether or not you take part in the process by not doing anything your lack of input and action also has consequences.

The difference in the last presidential election was a matter of 40,000 votes. The closest race ever I believe. Half the country did not vote. Regardless of their beliefs or their principals their decision was made for them.

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BladeOfCreation

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#24  Edited By BladeOfCreation

Constantly refreshing Twitter to see the latest news isn't healthy. No argument there. The world will go on in the few hours you're spending with friends and family. But completely ignoring it and wondering why anyone else cares doesn't seem like the right response, either. Especially as you're entering your 30s. This should be the age you start caring.

The shit that happens in the halls of government may be unlikely to have an adverse affect on every individual instantly. It will still have an affect. As others have pointed out, the more marginalized someone is, the more likely "politics" will affect them. For a broad view, look at the way the war on drugs disproportionately affects people who are not white. That's politics, and that has a real effect on individuals and communities.

Some years ago, I didn't have health insurance for part of a year. The time I was uninsured was long enough that I had to pay a tax penalty. That's politics.

I used to live in a state that requires yearly emissions testing for cars--a political and legal choice by those in power. Last year, it was going to cost me $1,300 to fix my car to get it to POSSIBLY pass an emissions test. My car was not quite old enough--and that amount of money not quite high enough--to allow me to get a waiver from the state for my car. So my decision to buy a newer car (and to take on additional debt to do so) was directly affected by political choices my state legislature had made.

Last month, my state started taxing single-use plastic bags at 10 cents each. A minor inconvenience for most people, true. It's still an example of a decision by politicians that affects everyone.

I gave one broad example and three personal ones of how politics--decisions by lawmakers/politicians, which I'm pretty sure is the purest definition of the word--can affect people.

The personal examples I shared all have a direct financial impact on my life. At the basest level, this is why you might to care about politics. There are additional, more important reasons to care about politics in general.

(Edited for clarity.)

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Shindig

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@sombre said:

Because it affects literally EVERYTHING you do in life, ever

Yep, although I keep my battles small and personal. Anything that influences my pay or working week. Or my ability to travel, save, etc.

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not_a_bumblebee

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I guess you're just cool with kids in cages, regular mass shootings, potential disastrous war with Iran, the rights of women, minorities, and LGBT people being stripped, climate change, etc. I wish I was that chill or nihilistic but I'm not a monster.

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clush

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@not_a_bumblebee: responses like that are a great reason to stay away from anything to do with politics. I would have something to say about a lot things politics-related, but in today's climate you can't even watch and enjoy a stand-up comedian without people judging you for it.

People stopped looking for reasonable discourse and common ground and are too busy blaming everyone else while digging their little trenches. I honestly can't blame anyone for saying 'fuck this, I'll check back in once people start listening again.'

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BonelessSpirit

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#28  Edited By BonelessSpirit

The problem is actually that people don't care enough about politics. The vast majority of citizens are severely uninformed about anything political. And simple bickering online is not an indication of any serious insight.

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north6

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@clush: Yeah, reminds of one of the most candid things I read by my favorite physicist, Richard Feynman - "Surely you're joking, Mr. Feynman!" (which is great!)

"Von Neumann gave me an interesting idea: that you don’t have to be responsible for the world that you’re in. So I have developed a very powerful sense of social irresponsibility as a result of Von Neumann’s advice. It’s made me a very happy man ever since."

Politics isn't for everyone, today I could make a pretty good argument that it's for those too absurd to brush aside the ol standby "God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, Courage to change the things I can, And wisdom to know the difference."

The trick is that wisdom part. Educate yourself, figure out what you want to change, and accept the anxiety. If you really want to get involved, start local, for your sanity's sake.

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TheRealTurk

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Your vote doesn't matter? Let me put it to you this way - there were 10704 people in Michigan who probably felt the same way you did . . .

. . . and they ended up REALLY mattering.

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Gundato

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#31  Edited By Gundato

@north6: I think just about everyone in this thread have said exactly that: Start local. If you aren't even willing to read up on the candidates for your local election then you are horrifically irresponsible.

As for claiming to not be able to change things: Voter turn outs are atrocious. Every few years there is at least one or two big upsets because folk run bus campaigns to actually get people out to vote. Even the reddest (or bluest) county can swing if people care enough.

And even if you are hellbent on insisting you have no control over the federal government: You can still write or call your local representatives and work your way up. Some things are fucked up in intrinsically broken ways (the gun lobbies come to mind) but politicians aren't (complete) idiots. If they are getting calls saying "Please reconsider your stance on X" or "Please for the love of god push for reform on X" they notice. Because if someone cares enough to write a letter or call their office then they, and many others, care enough to vote. And even if it just equates to another person raising their voice in congress it adds on to the push to actually fix things.

---

And just an aside; I get that you think you are worldly for knowing what you can and cannot change. Maybe don't use "old southern wisdom" in a thread that points out that apathy toward "politics" is a luxury of the entitled. And also probably don't use it in response to someone talking about how the US has straight up internment camps full of children and refugees.

Not to single you out, but it is a REALLY bad way to present your argument

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cikame

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As it pertains to video games i've no idea, it's become a hot topic to poke a developer and ask them about politics in their games but the answers are usually obvious.
Is the game based on reality? If so it probably has some politics in it, are the developers fighting for political change? Probably not, most people are primarily trying to make entertainment, a little political intrigue can be entertaining.
For me that's about as far as it goes, by virtue of being entertainment created by people living in political systems, games will have politics in them, but as someone looking for a fun time i couldn't care less.

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Panfoot

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I guess you're just cool with kids in cages, regular mass shootings, potential disastrous war with Iran, the rights of women, minorities, and LGBT people being stripped, climate change, etc. I wish I was that chill or nihilistic but I'm not a monster.

This, it's incredibly depressing how people can continue to ignore issues like these when all the tools and resources to get informed and help in even the smallest ways are at the tip of their fingertips. It's never been an easier time to try and make a difference and make a better world, and still people just don't give a shit.

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north6

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#34  Edited By north6

@gundato: Old southern wisdom? It's from AA. Clearly you're not a drinker, or a recovering political junkie.

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NTM

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#35  Edited By NTM

I understand not wanting to get super argumentative and downright ugly about it, but as said already, politics, and by extension, voting has a major effect on livelihoods. I'm 'only' 29, and this is clear to me. There are just people, like you (and trust me, there are a lot of people) that don't really care much, and merely hear the 'big' stuff from things like Facebook or something. My was, who is 39 is like that. We were having a conversation about it the other day. I'm not someone that will go out and protest due to major things that are affecting us, like gun control or climate change, so I'm not that into it, but I do keep up on politics to a degree just so I know what's going to affect me. Lastly, I will say, I do hate the way they write the voting ballets because sometimes it's confusing so I have to delve deep into the book they give me, and yet you have to dig even deeper elsewhere to see how any of it affects other stuff. I just want very clear pros and cons of everything. I do have a lack of faith in political honesty as people are always trying to win and make money and just get their way.

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Gundato

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#36  Edited By Gundato

@north6:AA is an inherently religious organization

And I personally tend to associate people who smugly cite pseudo-gospel as a way to reinforce their argument as using "southern wisdom". So apologies if that came from elsewhere

@ntm: Not entirely sure how legit it is to do so, but I just bring my phone into the voting booth these days. A few weeks to a month before I intend to vote (I usually go early as I travel a lot) I check sites like the league of women voters to see the ballot and get some data on each candidate or bill/proposition/whatever. Do research on my own time and just save a google doc with what I want to vote for and why. Day of I go in, check off what I planned to check off, and leave.

Also useful for checking up on politicians. If the dude who ran on a platform of gun control is being awkwardly silent the week after El Paso then you have a pretty good idea of who to not vote for in the future.

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north6

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@gundato said:

@north6:AA is an inherently religious organization

And I personally tend to associate people who smugly cite pseudo-gospel as a way to reinforce their argument as using "southern wisdom". So apologies if that came from elsewhere

That's fair, I'll cop to some smugness. Point taken.

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frytup

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@yesiamaduck: perhaps I should have edited the title to state “in America” and not so general. Hey n America I don’t see why we should care so much when the electoral college and other things have made individual votes rather useless.

Unless you live in a state that's solidly red or blue with no realistic chance of going the other way, you really shouldn't have the attitude that the Electoral College makes your vote meaningless.

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Gundato

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@frytup: And even then: a moderate or even third party candidate at the local level has a decent chance of winning and at least making your corner of the state a lot better.

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bongchilla

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I think what the OP is getting at here is the absolute shit show that the presidential elections have become pretty much since this monster became our president. The race is beginning to heat up and I’m sure people have mentioned this but that has become a divisive cluster**** Where literally nobody can have a constructive discussion about anything. Everyone throws reason out the window. That is what I agree gives me anxiety. I’m hoping that’s what the OP was getting at.

It goes without saying that voting is the most important right we have and be thankful because not everyone in the world have that right. Start researching your local community elections and get involved there. That is where you can actually see some change and hopefully be more fulfilling.

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ArbitraryWater

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#41  Edited By ArbitraryWater

I get that a lot of political discussion on the internet, if it isn't outright toxic, can just be plain exhausting. There's a whole lot of collective polemic, bad faith arguments, and hard black-and-white lines drawn by the most vocal people, so I can get not wanting to engage with that side of things (even if I agree with the people in question.) I've definitely reduced my social media presence over the last few years for the sake of my own sanity, and it's generally something I'd recommend doing if this kind of stuff gives you anxiety.

However, that doesn't change the fact that there are actual, real-world consequences for voting on a local, state, and federal level. I've definitely been insulated from a lot of the nightmarish political consequences of the last 3 years thanks to my gender, skin color, and personal safety net, but there are so many other people whose lives have been made actively worse because of the current administration's policies. It can be overwhelming, even feel a little hopeless, but if you focus on a handful of issues that you are passionate about and vote for policies and representatives that reflect what you'd like to see changed, I think that's not a bad place to start.

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shivermetimbers

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Lots of people are saying the OP is privileged without /really/ knowing the OP, while I know why people are doing this, I don't think it's helpful.

A lot of people, myself included intertwine social issues with political ones because simply put, they are very much one and the same. I would look up some issues and sides of said issue with some research and come up with your own conclusion. That involves you actually caring in the first place and having the mindset that politics and social dynamics are intertwined and that gov. officials aren't some old farts in a box arguing about things and not coming to any consensus (which granted more often than not they are, but American politics does involve participation and having your person in there making their stance).

I've made some controversial political stances on these forums, but generally speaking, I've kinda grown away from convincing people of my side, so I'm just gonna say find your own.

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FacelessRyan

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A someone who hates politics for various reasons, I like to know enough to have at least some sense of what's going on in the world, but not enough to either pop a Prozac or cut my wrist every time a politician (American or otherwise) says something that I don't agree with.

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NotSoSneakyGuy

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As people grow up and see the world and society, they create for themselves a model of how everything works and why.

I think for a lot of people it's about who to blame for the grievances they suffered in their lives, and what to do about them.

There's also a tribalism thing, people tend to like to sort each other into buckets.

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shorap

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#45  Edited By shorap

Echoing what others have stated about the importance of voting. Especially in this country, voting is something that effects not just your life but the lives of others, locally, nationally, and globally.

It’s also important to educate yourself to a certain degree politically outside of elections as well. Make sure to fact check or research a little on the content you’re ingesting as there’s a lot of grifters and bad faith actors out there.

You never know, you might take to politics more than you think. I just got done reading and enjoying books about the horrors of Silicon Valley, low wage/low skill/high stress jobs, and America’s history with it’s territories.

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Sweep

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#46 Sweep  Moderator

If you want to put it in a way that's more relateable, think about it like videogames; you buy games and consoles from developers you want to support, and you don't buy from developers and publishers that have business practices that you don't agree with. Politics is basically the same - if you're invested in a particular issue, be that rights for a certain group of people, the environment, immigration, international relations - whatever it is, then you're going to want to vote in a way which reflects those beliefs and pay attention to the news regarding those topics. Similarly with videogames, you want to support that business that put out games that you like, and avoid the ones that you don't - that's going to be different for each person, which is why it's important that each person has a vote. To make sure you're supporting the right developers you use forums (like this one) and listen to podcasts, read articles, and get involved with communities focused on videogame news.

Sure you're not obligated to care about politics, and similarly there are plenty of people who don't care about the videogame industry and just buy the latest Call Of Duty or FIFA or Madden without reading a single review or listening to a single podcast. It just depends on your own individual level of investment.

In an ideal world people would weigh up the merits of each candidate and political party before voting instead of the polarized shouting contest we have now. To extend the analogy, if you're the sort of person who mindlessly votes for a single party without actually engaging with the policies of anyone else, you're the political equivalent of a console fanboy :P

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FrodoBaggins

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I get where you are coming from. In a perfect world I'd like to be involved in politics, its just hard to care when the country is run by a bunch of currupt tossers.

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SethMode

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I'd say if I have anything additional to add at this point, it would be that it is kind of silly to act like things are anymore polarized now than they have been. More people have voices because the world is more connected, but things were just as polarized and intense throughout history. In some cases, even WORSE. Turns out, people disagree and get really serious when they disagree about things that they think are important.

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MrGreenMan

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#49  Edited By MrGreenMan

The thing is even if you don't like it politics are in a lot of things made even if they are not intended to be or not. Even when I was younger I have always been rather politically minded and a bit of an activist. I will often will bite my tongue and don't voice my opinion because it often will get me in trouble. The thing is, in many countries politicians have gone out of their way to profit off of other people misery and suffering, if you don't take a stand and just let them walk all over you and stay complacent things will continue to get progressively get worse. Many people will hate what I say here, but but by doing nothing you are allowing these criminals to continue to get away everything they do.

If you are somewhat politically minded please read The Coming of the Third Reich by Richard J. Evans. This book changed my life back in college and honestly is more apt now then ever. It's honestly one of the best history books on what can wrong when you allow the corrupt and evil to rise into power and politics.

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JasonR86

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#50  Edited By JasonR86

For a whole bunch of reasons.

I'll give on example. I'm a mental health therapist in Washington state, specifically in Western Washington. For vets that return from service, if they want to get therapy their options for a long time were to go to VA sites in Seattle, down south, or Mount Vernon, up north. I work just in the middle of those two cities, but Western Washington is huge and diverse. Not only is it wide but also there are islands off the coast people live on. With just two locations to get services, vets either had to basically free up a day, or at least a 1-3 hour block in the middle of a work day, to get to Seattle or Mount Vernon to get treatment. All treatment; medical, physical, and mental health. But, because of actions taken by the Obama administration, vets can now get services from private mental health practitioners, like me, if transportation is a problem. Before that, a lot of vets went without treatment because they couldn't afford to take time off of work, the VA only offered sessions during business hours, and weren't open on weekends. Without mental health service, not only is the quality of life for a vet, and others but for now lets just focus on vets, negatively effected so is that of their family and friends, it can impact their ability to maintain employment, and so on. In the broader, sort of colder sense, it can impact tax revenue, increase hospital visits, lower the amount of money spent on goods and entertainment, and so. The individual is hurt, families are hurt, community is hurt, and the government and country is hurt. But with one very political decision many of these problems are addressed. And what's more, there had been talk of the Trump administration removing these programs because it cost the federal government too much money, which is ridiculously short-sighted as up front costs would be far outweighed by long-term revenue (plus the whole supporting our troops thing), and luckily that went nowhere. But without a focus on politics, none of that happens.

Then there's the civil components to politics. There are the old standbys; the civil rights movement, women's right to vote, instituting laws to stop child labor, abolishing slavery. All political and changed through political means. As absurd as it might seem now, even as late as WWII blood donations were segregated with, for example, African American blood only being given to African Americans. Even as late as 1981, the KKK were lynching African Americans. Civil changes on a societal scale require political involvement.

People care about politics because, in the societies humans live in, politics are how those societies manifest, are maintained, and change.