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CT Green Party Condemns Students Being Told They Only Have Two Candidates

Ask others to report any exclusion of third party candidates in class rooms

Green Party leaders today argued against students being told and taught that there are only two parties in the upcoming elections. Tim McKee, a Green Party spokesperson said “With millions of people voting for a third party in 2008, teaching our students that there are only two candidates for President or Congress is both factually wrong and morally wrong.”   Almost three million people voted for Green Presidential candidate  in 2000, and 2008 polls have shown candidates Green Party candidate Cynthia McKinney, Libertarian Party Bob Barr and Independent Ralph Nader combined at between 3 to 6 %, meaning over 6 million people could vote third party this election, in some form.

The Green Party is asking for any reports of third party candidates being shut out in mock elections or discussions in the class room. The public is invited to email the Green Party at: greens@ctgreens.org or by calling 1(888) 877-8607

McKee sighted two examples. Local newspapers are running continuous “Student Mock elections” sections where in the class room, the students work on projects that feature ONLY the Democrats and the Republicans candidates for President.   He said this continues to be a problem for years, election after election, as third party candidates or Independents are shut out of the classroom discussion and curriculum. McKee added, “If a student says they want to vote for third party candidate, such as the Green Party’s Cynthia McKinney or Independent Ralph Nader, we don’t know what the teacher might say or do to the student in the class room. I know in the past, some students have been upset that they were told they must work on school projects or vote only for the two major party candidates”.

McKee said the Student Mock election issue hit home with him, as a returning older student at Central Connecticut State University, for several reasons.

First, he was concerned when the Green Party candidate for Congress in the 5th district, Harold Burbank was excluded from a debate on campus and school cancelled the entire debate.     He thinks students should be given a chance to hear from candidates like Burbank in a debate and make up their own minds.

Second, when a CCSU campus wide polling question was emailed to the students, they were asked only if they were voting for either McCain or Obama.  McKee said “ College students are smarter than that, and they know they have other options, but they were not given a choice or chance to voice a third or fourth option”.  He added “In light of the recent campus controversy about a third party candidate, you would think the campus would be more sensitive to the issue of inclusion of third party”.

McKee concluded “Democracy is a basic civics lesson that is being taught wrong if exclude some points of views.”

2 Responses

  1. Scholastic News is training children nationwide that there is no alternative to the Republicans and Democrats.

  2. Where in the debate was there anything but rhetoric about the “middle class”? We need to remember that tenants are being evicted from their apartments, despite the fact that they have always paid their rent on time because the banks are foreclosing on the mortgages held by he owners. We need to recognize that 2.2 million people are incarcerated in the U.S. because of the drug war. As the stock market continues to crash and credit is squeezed out of this economy more people will lose their jobs and pension safety net. When in the debate did anyone dare say “Social Security has to be transformed to more than a supplement for those in dire need”? When in the debate did anyone say that large areas of our cities resemble Berlin after WW2? When in the debate did anyone admit: “I should have listened to Ralph Nader about NAFTA, the stock market and real oversight of corporations”?

    Now is the time to localize the economy. Look to our neighbors and in our communities. Create new institutions capable of community investment. Build from the ground up out of the ashes of destroyed local economies. Farm co-ops need to function autonomously, retail co-ops will need to redefine their focus for sales. Apartment owners need to develop new rent-with-option-to-buy leases and agreements. The key is to pool financial resources and NOT try to go it on our own. Commitments to such revenue pools need to address many issues that have yet to arise, such as relocations for employment, decline of incomes, limited credit availability and increasing anxiety and depression. Intentional communities can address some of these issues but require responsible step-by-step development where reach does not exceed grasp.

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