Biden Won: Now What?

We’ve been saying here at In This Together, that November 3rd wasn’t the most important day in this election cycle, it was November 4th. November 4th was the day where, regardless of our political affiliations, either our greatest fear would be confirmed, or we could all take a collective sigh of relief. In a year as unpredictable as 2020, it’s no surprise that November 4th left us as tense, hopeful, and expectant as the day before.

We now know that Joe Biden has been declared President-elect. For about 70 million Americans, we can finally take that sigh of relief. For months leading up to the election, and the days and weeks that followed, we weren’t quite sure where our democracy was headed. Another four years of the Trump administration could have meant countless more deaths from the Coronavirus pandemic, the loss of rights for millions of Americans, and an even more deeply divided nation. Though many of us feel a sense of security now that we haven’t felt in years, Joe Biden and Kamala Harris have a long road ahead of them to attempt to mend our fragmented democracy — and so do we.

Donald Trump wasn’t the cause of a highly polarized electorate, he was a symptom of it. It may seem counterintuitive, but to the political industry and the media, polarization is a good thing. Keeping us apart is what keeps their pockets lined, and their agendas supported. They run campaigns based on fear, and it’s incredibly effective. In the months preceding the election especially, the media and the political industry told us two stories. The first was directed at the left, and it purported the most vicious, radical, and negative views of the right. And the left believed it. The second story was broadcast to the right, and it elevated the most condescending, self-righteous, and radical views of the left. And the right had no option but to believe. The funny thing is though, that those views make up the smallest parts of either side — about 15% on the right and 15% on the left. How does 30% of the voting population have the biggest voice? Because it sells the story, and it makes an enormous profit at the expense of the American people.

The good news is that there is a silent majority — about 70% of us who can agree on reasonable solutions to the problems that affect us all. That 70% is starting to mobilize, and we’re picking up Americans along the way who are sick of the fighting, the name-calling, the inaction. We’re striving toward the best version of ourselves and our country. In 2024, we’re challenging ourselves to choose a candidate focused on solutions.

This election cycle neither party gave us the best they had to offer, which is why many Americans felt like a vote in this election was a choice between the lesser of two evils. Though we should be grateful for stability, there are ways in which we can guarantee candidates we can get excited about in 2024 and beyond. To enact change, we can utilize our money and our votes. We use our money by asking the brands and the retailers that we support to shift their money from political campaigns and media channels that focus on fear and division. Now, if 5 million people ask their favorite brands, their favorite retailers to join them in withdrawing their money from news and from political channels that are calculated to divide us on fear, then we can change those business models. It will take about 5 million people to change the political business model, and it will most likely take 15 million or more to change the media business model, but that’s all it takes. Let’s empower the people to decide, and flip the political machine on its head.

We use our votes by committing to voting for those candidates that offer solutions, not those who hold up ineffective institutions. It starts by visiting and signing our Declaration of Interdependence. Hundreds of thousands of Americans have already joined us, but we need as many as we can to fight for the America we deserve. Join us today as we strive to Make America United Again.

Bill Shireman is a social entrepreneur and environmental policy innovator. He is the co-author of In This Together.