Throughout my campaign for a seat in the S.C. House of Representatives, I focused on my opponent's legislative voting record. That's because, when it's all said and done, what matters is not snazzy slogans or principled promises but a solid voting record. The establishment, attempting deflection from its dismal voting record, struck against me on my own personal voting record ... or lack thereof.
You see, this past primary election was the first time I've exercised my right to vote. In fact, I wasn't even registered to vote until several months ago. Like many of you, I've been disheartened by the failed status quo - and, seeing no candidate who was willing to challenge that failed status quo, I preferred sitting it out to choosing between the lesser of two evils. That is, until recently.
Within the past year or so, Americans in general and South Carolinians in particular are no longer willing to sit it out, nor to choose between the lesser of two evils. Fed up with the failed status quo, the people are chipping away at the "good old boy" system that cripples our country. Swept up in that sentiment myself, I decided not only to vote but to enter the political ring. For this, the establishment paints me as "entitled" and "pompous." In reality, it is the establishment itself that reeks of entitlement and exclusivity. They simply don't like anyone crashing their club, and that goes double for out-of-nowhere newcomers.
This refusal to welcome fresh faces is exactly what's wrong with our government. Rather than embrace enthusiastic newcomers, the good old boys instead smear us as gate-crashing interlopers. Now more than ever, our country and our state are in desperate need of new blood and fresh faces. Of course, that's what the establishment fears most. They're threatened by our energy, vitality and especially our refusal to go along to get along with the failed status quo.
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The writer lives in Surfside Beach.