The Daily Tar Heel

Serving the students and the University community since 1893

Saturday April 1st

Column: How many times do we have to teach you this lesson, old man?

Bernie, buddy, you’ve really got to stop. You as president is just never going to happen. Stop trying to make it happen. 

Now, I’m not saying any of this from a place of malice, at least I don’t want to be — I thought your first campaign brought a lot of very important ideas back into the public discourse. But you’ve got to understand it was the ideas that were important, not you. 

To make this as clear as possible, Bernie, you would not be a good president, and you are not going to win the election. For starters, you have articulated no strong foreign policy in your platform, instead zeroing in almost solely on economic issues. During your last campaign, you had to be pestered to provide a stance on anything besides inequality, and, while inequality is a huge problem, there’s a lot more going on that we need you to worry about. 

You tread more in populism than policy and can’t ground your high-minded ideas in the difficult and incredibly divided reality of American politics, instead leaving them floating somewhere up in the clouds. It’s not that I don’t like some of your ideas, it’s that you are not going to be the person to implement them and you need to stop trying to be. 

The movement you started is pushing forward concrete policies and fascinating new takes on the role of government against a rising sea of resurgent nationalism and poisonous misinformation. They are young, they are diverse, they come from all walks of life and they are putting up an amazing fight you should be proud of. So please stop stepping on their toes. 

Leading this movement is not your job anymore, and when you try to force yourself into that role you’re threatening to topple everything they’ve built together. It retracts from the validity of a movement founded on ideals of diversity and inclusion to abandon a pantheon of equally-qualified, younger and more diverse candidates for one old white guy who honestly doesn’t stand up to the giants stepping off his shoulders. 

I have to say, I can’t look at your new campaign and not see someone who doesn’t have the best interests of the party and the movement at heart. You’re smart enough to know that the field is already overcrowded, and all you’re doing is splintering an already splintered voter base, setting up the other, easier kind of populism (the racist kind) for another win once this primary stumbles to the finish line. 

Please drop this useless power grab and accept that your role in this movement has never been presidential. And this also goes to everybody throwing their support behind Bernie: your voice is too important to waste on someone who just doesn’t know when to pack it up and retire already. If we really want to push America into the future, we have to stop voting for the past. So Bernie, please just take the hint and drop this whole thing. Nobody wants to have to tell you twice. 

Oh, and Hillary, there are rumors that you’re “leaving the door open.” I’m going to need you to slam that door closed as hard as humanly possible. Thanks.    

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