We need a peaceful way to overthrow the government.

There is such a mechanism, but it does not yet exist in our state, federal or local elections.

We need “none of the above” on every election ballot, or its equivalent: “Not him/her,” or “Somebody else.”

We should amend the federal Constitution, and convene a state Constitution, to give us the option of turning out incumbents without being forced to vote in favor of someone else.

The Founding Fathers suffered from a lack of experience in crafting the Constitution. They had never lived under the Constitution. They were attempting to give us something new in governance, a government of, by and for the people.

To some extent, they succeeded.

But it cost a half-million lives and then some – 620,000 dead – in our Civil War to set straight the awful compromise of that first Constitution, which was that to get it approved, we had to agree that some human beings could continue to be owned as property by other human beings.

That “three-fifths of other persons” clause, and its corollaries, gave the blunt lie to the high-flown Declaration of Independence, “ALL men are created equal,” and the lofty Preamble, “We, the People.”

Until the Civil War, our so-beloved Constitution allowed that awful compromise with morality, slavery, because tolerating slavery was needed to get Southern states’ votes to approve the Constitution.

That same Constitution only allows us to vote against someone by voting for someone else. If both candidates are flawed, as happened in last year’s Presidential election, we had no way out except to elect either Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton. Trump is now President.

Here in Pennsylvania and there in Washington, we ought to be able to vote for “someone else.” If “someone else” won, the incumbent would be ousted, and prohibited from seeking the same office for twice the length of its term, as a suggestion.

Within 30 days, a new election would need to be held in the affected district/government/state.

Too short a time?

Pish tush. In this age of Internet and 24/7 TV, of cell phones and Twitter, candidates can be known and evaluated at a glance. Just see how we do that every day on Facebook.

Voting for “none of the above” or “somebody else,” forcing runoff or “snap” elections as is done in several European democracies, will give us the chance to change government for the better, not just continue electing dolts.

— Denny Bonavita

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