By Georgia Wyess
Many believe presidential debates provide crucial information for the public and give the citizens of the United States insight into our political system. However, each year, as the discussion progresses, the two candidates transform political debates into political disputes. Rather than answering questions directly and providing facts and insight into how each individual plans to run the country, political debates—*cough cough* arguments *cough*—cause greater confusion and spike the stress levels of the entire country. While the congregation of the two candidates is useful for the presidential nominees to release their pent up aggression towards each other, the American public suffers from watching these reality TV episodes.
For someone who takes interest in politics, I believe informing yourself about the goals and beliefs of each presidential candidate becomes critical when making decisions about our current lack of a coherent government. Debates should not be the place you go to make these decisions. Rather, the presidential arguments should be your final destination after forming your opinion. Here’s why: candidates often use their two minutes to rebut what their opponent has claimed rather than answering the given prompt—teaching the public zilch about the political platforms each candidate presents. Moreover, these “rebuttals” are mainly insults against the rival; more often than not drowned out by the other candidate speaking over the opponent or the mediator. We have a perfect example of this due to the recent 2020 presidential debate. Biden called Trump a “clown” twice while Trump repeatedly spoke over Biden as he made desperate attempts to make himself heard. What did spectators get from this? Absolutely nothing. I learned that Biden can still insult someone despite his fragile age and Trump will not stop talking if you put him in front of a podium. Since this seems to be the state of the current political agenda, the people have no way to form an opinion about our current government from listening to 70+ year old incoherent white men. Allow me to give you a tip: save your time and research the presidential platforms of each individual in the peace and quiet of your own home. Everything each candidate attempts to say in these arguments is the same thing they have written on their respective websites.
Additionally, watching presidential debates causes an immediate and significant rise in stress levels. Future nurses and doctors, listen up: if you have a patient in the hospital with low blood pressure, put the 2020 presidential debate on and play it for him, you’ll release the inpatient from the hospital that same evening with pills meant to lower blood pressure. Before the first half-hour comes to a close, at least one candidate has begun yelling, and the moderator has begun to lose his or her mind, and the audience has given up on learning anything productive from the debate.
Simply, presidential debates are a royal waste of time; if you choose to stay updated on the current presidential election, read the political platforms, you might save a couple years of your life.