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Trump is Like Salmonella Ice Cream

I am pro-third party candidates.  More choices mean more viewpoints, and frankly, there are a lot of ways we could positively run this country.  Democrats and Republicans don’t have a monopoly on good ideas.

But this election is different, and I’m going to ask you not to vote for a third party candidate when it comes to the presidency.  I know there is a feeling of “if not now, when,” but I repeat that it’s this election: It’s different.  Please hear me out.

Imagine your teacher says that your class can have an ice cream party, but you need to vote and decide on a single flavour of ice cream.  The choices are chocolate, vanilla, and strawberry.

strawberry ice cream

Image: Joy via Flickr via Creative Commons license

4 kids vote for chocolate, 4 kids vote for vanilla, and 1 kid votes for strawberry, which is what you really want.  Maybe you think, “Well, I don’t mind chocolate, though I really want strawberry.  I will vote for strawberry to show them that I really want strawberry and that will affect the next time we get ice cream.”  Or maybe you think, “I don’t like chocolate or vanilla, so I will vote for strawberry because that’s what I like and eat whichever one wins because who really cares if it can’t be strawberry.”

If we were voting between chocolate, vanilla, and strawberry, I would not be writing this.  But we’re not talking about three equal but different ice cream flavours.

This is what this election is like: 4 kids vote for chocolate, 4 kids vote for salmonella-poisoned ice cream, and 1 kid votes for strawberry.  You may not like chocolate, but I think we can all agree that voting for salmonella-laced ice cream is not a healthy decision.  It has the potential to make the class very ill, and if nothing else, the class will be filled with dread while they wait to find out if the ice cream they knowingly consumed is going to harm them.

While that strawberry ice cream looks really good, and it’s what you actually want, your vote will not get the class that desired strawberry treat but could get the class the salmonella-laced ice cream.

So I’m going to ask you a favour to keep America healthy, and I ask this knowing full well that there will be a time when you will ask me to help you get strawberry as the flavour winner: Please vote for Hillary Clinton.

There will be future elections where we’re not fighting to keep bacteria out of our ice cream bowls, and there are many other positions of power in which to elect third party candidates this November.

Please make your vote count this election, and stand together with reason and capability.  It’s a huge ask, and I know that it is not easy to cast a vote for a candidate that doesn’t match your ideology.  But the only way to keep bacteria from spreading is to wash our hands of it.


1 Mrs T { 10.21.16 at 1:54 pm }

Yes. Apt analogy.

2 Beth { 10.21.16 at 1:55 pm }

Spot on.

3 Chris { 10.21.16 at 2:17 pm }

Perfect description. And, as much as I adore Bernie, I won’t be voting third party for this very reason.

4 Sharon { 10.21.16 at 2:54 pm }

I’m with her.

5 Working mom of 2 { 10.21.16 at 3:30 pm }

I don’t see how anyone could vote 3P after the Nader debacle. And now the stakes are much higher and the potential outcome far, far worse.

6 jjiraffe { 10.21.16 at 3:39 pm }


7 a { 10.21.16 at 3:53 pm }

It seems like everyone I know will vote sanely, but I know nothing ever turns out the way you expect. I’m still hoping for the best, though…

8 Caryn { 10.21.16 at 3:55 pm }

I’m with her.

9 Cristy { 10.21.16 at 4:12 pm }

Are there really any third party candidates for this election? I’ve seen something for the libertarian/rainbow party (which I know nothing about), but no one who’s truly come forward as being like a Ross Perot or Ralph Nader.

What I have heard is some strategies about not voting, with the idea of neither candidate winning the electoral college and, thus, having Paul Ryan become our next president as the default would be towards the speaker of the house (also a bit scary).

10 Jamie { 10.21.16 at 6:24 pm }

From the National Archives and Records Administration:

“What happens if no presidential candidate gets 270 Electoral votes?

If no candidate receives a majority of Electoral votes, the House of Representatives elects the President from the 3 Presidential candidates who received the most Electoral votes. Each state delegation has one vote. The Senate would elect the Vice President from the 2 Vice Presidential candidates with the most Electoral votes. Each Senator would cast one vote for Vice President. If the House of Representatives fails to elect a President by Inauguration Day, the Vice-President Elect serves as acting President until the deadlock is resolved in the House. ”


More food for thought:


So, the Republicans currently control the House of Representatives. If no one wins the 270 electoral college vote, the House decides. This probably a large reason why Bernie has backed Hilliary so that she does not lose the electoral vote. However, if you live in a state where it is likely who will carry the vote, you can vote for a third party candidate to send a message of displeasure/discord/angst with the Republican and Democratic party candidates. I live in a swing state, so voting for a third party candidate or not voting at all is a huge risk.

Drives me crazy when people say they are not happy with the candidates, so the are not voting to send a message. You are not sending a message to encourage the two larger parties to get better candidates. You are sending a message that you give up or don’t care, and they still get what they want. So nervous about this election!

11 catie { 10.21.16 at 9:06 pm }

A thousand times this. I happen to be with her (have been since 2007, wasn’t an Obama fan and I’m not a Bernie fan), but any vote not for Secretary Clinton is one for Trump in this election. I keep trying to explain this to the people in my life. They still aren’t over Bernie not getting the nomination and I think the bitterness is clouding their judgement.

12 Jess { 10.22.16 at 5:17 pm }

Love this, so much. Salmonella-laced ice cream for sure. I am horrified at how close things are looking… it makes ZERO sense to me. This bacteria ice cream is NOT what America should be about. Hillary all the way. I thought she killed it in the final debate, but then he went up in the polls…what the heck is happening???

13 Lori Lavender Luz { 10.23.16 at 11:22 am }

This analogy works, unless you are someone who thinks the choices are salmonella ice cream and botulism ice cream. It’s understandable that to them, strawberry seems like the only sane choice.

14 Mel { 10.23.16 at 1:57 pm }

Well in that analogy, there is no strawberry ice cream. They are just two bowls of milk. Which definitely has potential to become ice cream, but is definitely not ice cream yet. 🙂

15 Jamie { 10.23.16 at 10:41 pm }

Depends on your state. In my very red state (Utah), a third party candidate is actually leading Trump in the polling…and although he has no chance of winning, I will be delighted if he takes enough votes away from Trump to hand Hillary the state. I just straight up voted for her, but for my friends who don’t like her, it will be great if they vote third party.

16 Jenn P { 10.25.16 at 9:08 pm }

Though I don’t want salmonella, I also don’t want e-coli, and can’t in due conscious vote for either and be morally responsible for my classmates getting sick. I know I will be the minority and am okay voting for strawberry even if I’m not quite sure if those strawberries are organic. Polls show e-coli/chocolate will likely win but I don’t want to vote for it.

(c) 2006 Melissa S. Ford
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