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Opinion Blogs
Opinion: 2018 Midterm Election Day Madness from a Concerned Millennial Voter
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Opinion: 2018 Midterm Election Day Madness from a Concerned Millennial Voter

Opinion: 2018 Midterm Election Day Madness from a Concerned Millennial Voter

Opinion: 2018 Midterm Election Day Madness from a Concerned Millennial Voter

It’s hard to imagine that today is already Election Day 2018. I remember less than 3 years ago when a friend invited me to attend a ‘Make America Great’ rally for Donald Trump at the Fox Theatre in Downtown, Atlanta. I wasn’t sure what to expect and left the rally speechless.

I didn’t think politicians were allowed to be so vulgar, throwing red meat talking points out to a pack of hungry wolves. Sure, I had seen many Trump rallies on television and heard them on the radio, he was running for President, but to actually witness such a circus was eye-opening. I was genuinely worried about Trump’s rhetoric and thought that his tone wouldn’t help fellow Republican Party candidates running alongside him in the heated 2016 political race. I didn’t think he was ready to lead the United States. 

With that being said, I was ready for change. At the time we had heard for 8 years that the U.S. was no longer a world power and that we needed to level the global playing field. I didn’t understand these viewpoints. I continued advancing in my career and distanced myself from my college years. I began to realize that hard work is the one thing that will help you prevail in this world, no matter where you came from in life. For years, we were told that the best days of America were behind us and the days of America leading the world were numbered. I disagreed. 

The Democrats quickly transformed from the party in power to the party of self-entitled victims. There were some exceptions, but let’s not forget that they also believed that Hillary Clinton deserved the presidency without a single vote being cast. Middle America didn’t agree and the rest is history. 

I proudly vote in every election and in 2016, I threw my vote away to Libertarian, Gary Johnson and voted for all parties on my ballot. I have zero party loyalty. 

Fast-forward 3 years and Donald Trump is now President Trump and some of the polices that concerned me as a voter are being accomplished at the executive level. I still hate his rhetoric but can honestly say that my original assumption was incorrect. Trump has done a better job than most expected and few will admit it. The economy is booming, and unemployment is at a record low. You can’t give him all the credit, but he certainly deserves some of it. Trump has many weaknesses, but I vote for the individual and encourage others to do the same. Just because you don’t agree on everything a politician stands for doesn’t mean that the person is a bad candidate. If Donald Trump were on my 2018 midterm ballot today, I’d take a deep breath and probably vote for him. Why? 

I hoped that the Democratic Party would have learned their lesson of going too far to the left in 2016, but to my dismay, the party of ‘Hope’ and ‘Change’ in 08’ and 12’ quickly became the resist party and party of whiners. Instead of shifting to the political center they decided to shift further to the left. Don’t forget that in 2016 the Democrats rigged their primary debates to give Hillary Clinton an edge over Bernie Sanders for their presidential nomination. Today, the party is not much different. We have a party whose main goal, if elected, will be to impeach and obstruct Trump. 

I’m not saying Republicans are better. I think we all remember the gridlock between John Boehner, Mitch McConnell, and President Obama. We also can’t leave out the current immigration fiasco, lack of vision for healthcare, and the 2nd tax cut bluff that many Americans sniffed out weeks ago. Generic Democrats have polled better than generic Republicans for months now. 

Nationally, Democrats and Republicans are fighting for both chambers of Congress. I predict that the Democrats will narrowly retake the House of Representatives and Republicans will hold the Senate. We’ll find out tonight. 

What I’m most concerned about is the poor explanations of the candidates. I watch a good amount of television and I cannot point to a single political advertisement that changed my opinion. Perhaps it’s a good thing? This election has devolved into a battle where each side is throwing out the most outrageous advertisements to sway voters to vote straight down party lines. Don’t fall for them! 

I watch these pitiful advertisements and wonder who these parties are targeting. The Baby Boomers and Gen Xers are quick to bark out that they’re targeting Millennials. Again, don’t fall for them! 

Before you vote later today, look up your ballot and take some time to read about your candidates. Your city government has more of a direct impact on your daily life than the national election or even the governorship. Don’t be a pawn for one party and vote for the individual that you think will do the best job. 

Here in Georgia we have a gubernatorial race that’s become the contest to see which candidate says the least. Republicans use their typical attack ads suggesting that (Insert Generic Democrat Name Here) is a socialist and that he or she wants to take your guns, raise taxes, and fund abortions while Democrats paint (Insert Generic Republican Name Here) as gun-toting irresponsible rednecks that give money to the wealthy. Both assumptions are untrue. 

It’s a heated battle between Democrat Stacey Abrams and Republican Brian Kemp. I would throw in Libertarian Ted Metz, but he is consistently polling around 2% and may pull just enough votes to create a runoff scenario, but that’s it. I had the privilege of meeting Abrams and Kemp earlier this year and both are good people. I happen to agree more with one than the other, but I don’t hate either of them. Take some time and read about these candidates before casting your vote. No matter what happens or if your candidate loses, the wonderful thing about America is that another election is always near. 

 

Jared Yamamoto is a Doctrinaire and Producer of The Von Haessler Doctrine radio show heard daily from 9-Noon on News 95.5 and AM 750 in Atlanta, Georgia. 

Email jared.yamamoto@coxinc.com 

Twitter: @jaredyamamoto 

Instagram: @jaredyamamoto

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News

  • A New Jersey judge who said a teenage boy accused of rape deserved leniency because he came from a 'good family' and got good grades has resigned. >>Read more trending news Monmouth County Superior Court Judge James Troiano resigned Wednesday, the New Jersey Supreme Court announced. The resignation came after weeks of criticism from the public and death threats to Troiano's family, The New York Times reported. In 2018, Troiano, 69, was called out of retirement to hear the case of an alleged rape involving teenagers at a party the previous year, The Washington Post reported. Police said a 16-year-old boy recorded cellphone video of himself sexually assaulting a 16-year-old girl. The boy allegedly sent the video to others with the caption, “When your first time having sex was rape.” Both teens were intoxicated during the incident, prosecutors said. Prosecutors in the case pushed for the teen to be tried as an adult, calling his alleged crime 'sophisticated and predatory,' CNN reported. Troiano denied prosecutors' request. He wrote in his July 2018 decision that he didn't think the teen's actions were necessarily rape, because in 'traditional' rape cases there are 'two or more generally males involved, either at gunpoint or weapon, clearly manhandling a person.' Troiano further wrote, “This young man comes from a good family who put him into an excellent school where he was doing extremely well. He is clearly a candidate for not just college but probably for a good college. His scores for college entry were very high.” The Appellate Division of the New Jersey Superior Court reversed Troiano's decision in June, and sent the case back down for further judgement, CNN reported. Monmouth County prosecutors are planning their next move in the case. 'While we have the utmost respect for the Family Court and the judge in this case, we are grateful that the Appellate Division agreed with our assessment that this case met the legal standards for waiver to Superior Court,' Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher Gramiccioni said in a statement. 'As with all cases, we are assessing our next steps, which will include discussions with the victim and her family.
  • The first trailer for the upcoming musical film 'Cats' has been released. >>Read more trending news 'Cats' is an adaptation of the 1981 Broadway musical of the same name. Based on a collection of poems by T.S. Eliot and featuring music by Andrew Lloyd Weber, 'Cats' follows a tribe of cats called the Jellicles as they decide which cat will come back to life, according to the film's Internet Movie Database page. The original Broadway production ran for nearly 28 years and won several awards, including the 1983 Tony Award for Best Musical. The movie's star-studded cast includes Judi Dench, Idris Elba, Taylor Swift, Jennifer Hudson, James Corden and others. It introduces ballerina Francesca Hayward in her first movie role. Viewers tweeted their reactions to the trailer. Many reactions were negative, as viewers said they found the appearance of the cat characters unsettling. 'Cats' is set for a December 20 release date.
  • A photo of a dog tied up on the back of a tow truck as it goes down busy Massachusetts highway has upset so many drivers who saw it that they now won't stop calling the tow company. >> Read more trending news The Animal Rescue League and Massachusetts State Police are now investigating the alleged crime. The picture snapped by a Brockton, Massachusetts, man and posted on Facebook drew instant criticism. People quickly began posting their objections and flooding the towing company with calls. Apparently, the two people in the van being towed were in the cab of the tow truck and that's why the dog was chained to the bed. The dog is owned by the driver of the truck. The man who took the picture, Mike Gerry, also has a dog: Molly.  Mike says he saw the dog on the flatbed while driving down Route 128 near Route 2 on Wednesday. He beeped and tried to get the tow truck driver’s attention but had no luck. 'I posted it on Facebook for my buddies to put it out there. and it went unreal, it went ballistic,' Gerry said. 'And ever since then people have been commenting on it, 'you're doing the right thing.'' To be clear the company told WFXT the dog being chained to the back of a flatbed truck is not their policy. The driver has reportedly been fired and the dog is OK.  The company also says it is donating $1,000 to the MSPCA and has set up a call center so it can answer and return every single call about the incident.
  • An Oklahoma man is in custody after allegedly raping a 4-year-old girl in a McDonald’s bathroom while the child was on a field trip with her day care class, according to news reports. >> Read more trending news  It happened Tuesday inside a McDonald’s in Midwest City in metro Oklahoma City when the little girl went to the bathroom alone, WXIN-TV reported. Day care employees told responding officers they went to check on the girl after she had “been gone for a while.”  They said they found the bathroom door locked and when they knocked, a man opened the door.He allegedly came out with his hands up and said, “I was just washing my hands,” the news station reported. The 4-year-old allegedly told police she was touched inappropriately by the man, identified as Joshua Kabatra, 37. Police arrested Kabatra at the scene, according to WXIN. He’s facing two rape charges and a count of lewd acts with a child.
  • Do you feel you’re better focused on the job with a little light background jazz or coffee shop chatter compared to pin-drop silence? Scientists might know why. >> Read more trending news According to Onno van der Groen, a researcher with Australia’s Edith Cowan University school of medical and health sciences, some background noise can actually be beneficial for our senses. This phenomenon is called “stochastic resonance.” First studied in animals, stochastic resonance experiments suggest “sensory signals can be enhanced by noise and improve behaviour in various animals,” van der Groen wrote for The Conversation last week. “For example, crayfish were shown to be better at avoiding predators when a small amount of random electrical currents were added to their tail fins. Paddlefish caught more plankton when small currents were added to the water.” In human experiments, where noise levels were manipulated by getting participants to listen to noisy sounds or feel random vibrations on the skin, people were better able to see, hear and feel at “a certain optimum noise level.” If it were too loud, however, performance dropped. Van der Groen pointed out that stochastic resonance has several real life applications for humans, too. “Adding noise to the feet of people with vibrating insoles can improve balance performance in elderly adults,” he wrote. For patients with diabetes or those recovering from stroke, this can also be used to augment muscle function. His own research has found that when brain currents are applied to participants’ brains with random noise stimulation, “it improved how well they could see a low-quality image.” When he and other researchers applied the same technique to other groups, they noticed “decisions were more accurate and faster when brain cell noise levels are tuned up.” Transcranial random noise stimulation also influenced what participants saw during a visual illusion, suggesting noise could help people approach a situation from multiple perspectives. But the thing about stochastic resonance is it differs from person to person.  The optimal amount of noise for top-notch cognitive function depends on a variety of factors, such as brain variability. Excessive brain variability, van der Groen wrote, is common in those with autism, dyslexia, ADHD and schizophrenia. Elderly folks also tend to have more brain noise (or brain variability) than younger individuals. However, because brain noise can be altered with random noise stimulation, van der Groen believes there are opportunities to explore “interventions or devices to manipulate noise levels, which could improve cognitive functioning in health and disease.”  For example, a study of children with ADHD found white noise delivered specifically through Etymotic earphones at 77 decibels improved memory and concentration. Plenty of downloadable ambient, white and “pink” noise apps have also popped up in recent years. There’s Coffitivity, which plays an infinite loop of coffee-shop sounds — and Noisli, which suggests different sounds for different goals. If you want to improve productivity, you might mix raindrops and train tracks. For those who want to relax, listen to crashing waves. Generally, ambient noise is ideal for creativity, white noise is sound for concentration and pink noise might be most helpful in improving sleep quality. But remember, finding stochastic resonance isn’t a one-size-fits-all process. Play around and see which background noises and volumes work best for you. This guide from Techlicious is a good place to start.
  • An act of kindness extended by three young men has gotten a lot of attention on social media since then.  >> Read more trending news Sean Wetzonis says it all started when he, Pedro and two other friends from Malden planned to attend the game.  But one friend backed out, leaving Pedro with an extra ticket.  'And Pedro's father had suggested, he was like, 'find a girl. Find a girl to take to the game,'' Sean Wetzonis told Boston 25 News. But he said Pedro had another idea.  'He said, 'you know, I'll give it to a homeless person. If I could find a homeless person,' Wetzonis said. Finding a homeless person in Boston is not difficult. Enter John, who was sitting on a stoop near Fenway Park. 'When Pedro asked him if he wanted to go to a Red Sox game, at first I wasn't sure if he was going to get up, but then he said sure and he got up and he seemed pretty excited about it,' Wetzonis said.  He admits he was skeptical about taking a homeless guy to the game. 'I was kind of shocked. Everyone was like, 'dude. You got another ticket. You could try and sell it to make some money back.,' Wetzonis said.  But then he saw something you don't see enough of these days at professional sporting events: a fan actually watching the game.  'Everyone's there sitting on their phones, texting and looking around. He was really immersed in the game. He was there to enjoy the game,' Wetzonis said.  The Red Sox lost Tuesday night. But for three young men from Malden, it was, perhaps, the winningest night at Fenway ever.