Election ads should focus on substantive issues and not hype
In the precious time left before the upcoming P residential election, partisan campaign advertisements are a dominant feature of all media outlets. These ads make no attempt to focus on the actual issues of the election, and instead seek to sway the viewer?s bias against the opposing candidate. The creators of these commercials realize it is easier to be condescending to the American public and sway them with slogans, scare tactics, and morality attacks than to present the candidate?s stance on current issues, voting record, and plans for the future, all of which are what a voter should take into consideration before deciding on a candidate.
One of the most recent examples of this partisan display comes with a Republican spin. Eerie and dramatic music plays in the background as wolves scavenge around in the background, and a woman?s voice says: ?In an increasingly dangerous world, even after the first terrorist attack on America, John Kerry and the liberals in Congress voted to slash America?s intelligence operations by six billion dollars; cuts so deep they would have weakened America?s defenses, and weakness attracts those who are waiting to do America harm.? The biggest issue with this advertisement is that it is intentionally vague; referring to the terrorist attack in 1993, not what the vast majority would believe was September 11.
On the Democratic side, there are blatant attempts to pander to certain demographics. The abuse of patriotic symbols during these advertisements is rampant, because it is easier than actually proving patriotism or making a case for Kerry?s election. ?Our soldiers fighting in Iraq are heroes; their families have earned our thanks and our support. As we see the crisis and chaos in Iraq, as we choose a new commander in chief, we will always support and honor those who serve: Strength, Courage, Patriotism.? This broad general statement means nothing to the election. It holds no plan for the future of Iraq, nor does it make any progressive argument addressing his case. Eagles and flags cannot be used to elect a President any more than it can to sell a car. Candidates need to be elected because they are capable of leading and protecting a nation, and protecting the individual citizens of that nation. They cannot merely be displayed like a windup doll spouting general statements designed to gain support, but this is how they are being touted by their advertisements.
This trend of condescension to the public to present a candidate aids no one. An election, especially one as important as this, should not be presented the same way as a Jerry Springer commercial. An election should be seen as a time to support discussion and promote a thorough understanding of the political system. If this behavior is not encouraged by those running for office, then who take up the cause? People must seek to combat the growing media sensationalism of politics, or we will merely have this forced upon us for years to come.