Thank you, Stan Trout, for your powerful message on being a true American ("Being American means we find what binds us," June 16.

The forebodings of our first two presidents are far too ominous today. As John Adams summarized in 1789, "There is nothing which I dread so much as a division of the republic into two great parties, each arranged under its leader, and concerting measures in opposition to each other. This, in my humble apprehension, is to be dreaded as the greatest political evil under our Constitution."

We have now embraced the epitome of that evil as our beloved bipartisan system has produced two massive juggernauts, each more dedicated to the ruination of the other party than to representative governance.

Americans are so starved for change that we elected a president primarily because he wasn't a politician. Consider the political successes of our Oklahoma teachers, change-agents not driven by the status quo but against it.

Ultimately, a major third party, even a hybrid, seems necessary to recenter our ideologies and rebalance the political landscape. Over 40% of our electorate identify as independent, more than either party. Yet, thanks to the bipartisan stranglehold on expanded voting rights, this moderate plurality has no place to call home.

Perhaps our younger generations will be the ones to rage against the machine, but time is running out to unite, to inspire, to demand that our representatives break ranks for the common ground of compromise. The circus act we have today will inevitably go up in flames, and we and our children will be trapped in the tent.


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