Pause for some of you to gasp in horror.
I didn't vote until the last presidential election. I wasn't registered, and I didn't bother. I didn't CARE about politics. I wish I still didn't.
My frustrations with the political campaign season consist of two things. One, not being able to easily get unbiased, straight facts about what one candidate stands for. And two, the negative campaign ads. I hate them. It doesn't matter if they're put out by the candidate I am supporting or his opponent, I despise attack ads. I want to hear about what is good about you, what you will do for this country, this state, etc, not what you and your biased political party think the other candidate is doing wrong.
I recently visited the campaign pages of both our main presidential candidates. All over Obama's page is what's bad about Romney. I mean, all over. Any issue you scroll to, in bold red lettering is the negative about Romney. There's even a "Truth Team" if you click on the "Get the Facts" link that is completely attacking Romney. Romney's page is not without fault either, though it's more subtle. If you view Romney's stance on each issue, there is discussion of Obama's weaknesses or failures, but not in invasive font and not on the front page. I just wish it wasn't there at all. I spotted the Nobama bumper stickers and it pissed me off.
These types of things would be fine, if they were put out by unaffiliated individuals. If Joe Blow wants to sell Nobama bumper stickers out of his front yard, so be it. But to be put out right there on the candidates website is annoying and distasteful.
And I do find that this negativity feeds right into blogs, twitter and facebook feeds. More and more I see posts that attack candidates, and I feel that instead of expressing your support for your choice, it instead is meant to make another person feel bad about choosing a different side. How is one supposed to not question their choice when they see four other people continually putting down the person they support? I am, in a way, guilty of this very thing. Those of you who know me well know who I'm voting for. I'm not exactly quiet about my opinion. (Though I do want to stop and say that I do not agree with him on every issue, but when choosing a candidate I believe you need to make your decision based on the issues that matter most to you). I am friends with a lot of people who support my candidate's opponent. Often, my twitter and facebook feed are filled with comments and articles attacking my candidate. And sometimes I cannot bite my tongue hard enough to not fire something back. Generally it is a comment on the person's post, sometimes I'll "like" an article I read that supports my candidate. And lately I've been using Twitter to fire back too. I don't like me like this. This is what I meant by wishing I could go back to not caring. To being blissfully ignorant when it comes to politics. The me 15 years ago would never have posted a single tweet about a politician (beyond professing my undying love for former President Clinton. Don't judge me).
I would love for all this negativity to just stop altogether, and for future campaign seasons to instead focus on the positives of a candidate without reference to their opponents. Let neutral parties pull together unbiased, factual information about each party's stance on the issues, so that voters can decide for themselves who they prefer. I realize this is a pipe dream, but wouldn't it be nice to not have so many attack ads on your TV/Internet?