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To Concede or Not to Concede?

By Izhaan Ahmed

Since Election Day on November 3, conversations regarding the credibility of the election have grown in popularity, epitomized by a refusal to concede from the current president Donald Trump, who is instead opting to pursue legal engagements in several states.

“Regardless of your opinion on who is right, the election clearly shows how divided our nation is,” said sophomore Luke Jacob.

In a speech presented during the early hours of November 4, President Trump included a comment that may have been perceived to be an early declaration of winning the election, referencing the abundance of votes for him in many states at that point in time. Between this moment and the final election projection, protests ensued near voting booths and vote-counting facilities, casting doubt on the trends of the results at that point.

Despite these events, on November 7, many media outlets projected former Vice President Joe Biden as the apparent winner of the 2020 presidential election, further spurring outrage from those skeptical of the credibility of the election. Nonetheless, Biden’s access to classified briefings, among other privileges that are assumed to be handed to the president-elect, was postponed. Biden and his team, however, remained undeterred and minimally affected by this episode.

Source by Shadia Zayer

The 2020 presidential election has shown American citizens how deeply divided the country is.

“Political views aside, this election seemed centered more towards outrage rather than through due legal process, at least according to the media,” said junior Gregory Marzano.

A significant minority of the population still believes that the election was not completely just. They claim they have a multitude of evidence despite declarations by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security that state this election had been the most secure election ever. It should also be noted that election experts predicted the exact event that transpired on election night. Dubbing it the “red mirage,” the scenario predicted that the current POTUS would be in the lead in many crucial states early on in the election race due to various state laws on order of vote count. As mail-in ballots favored Biden and in-person ballots favored Trump, counting in-person ballots before the mail-in ballots would lead to an apparent Trump landslide, only to be balanced out later on.

Now that it has been a few weeks since Election Day, news outlets also conclude projected electoral vote counts of 306 - 232, favoring Biden - the same electoral vote count that was projected four years ago favoring Trump. Not only has Biden maintained this projected lead over Trump, but he has also been certified by enough states to maintain that position. Minimal changes may occur to the electoral vote count due to faithless electors, which is another ordeal. As of December 14, 2020 the electoral college formally chose Joe Biden as the nation's next president with a majority of 306 electoral votes.

An attempt to overturn an election rather than concede is an unprecedented feat that raises numerous questions. President Trump’s ethics regarding the election have been under much scrutiny, which is said to be potentially setting a bad example to younger generations regarding implicit reactions to losing, among other acts committed by the president.

People are impressionable and easy to mold when they are younger, and with the increased availability of information to teenagers, they have access to virtually anything. Through the media's coverage of the aftermath of Election Day, students will be influenced by what they hear. As the person in power, Trump has the entirety of America's eyes on him, yet he is still refusing to concede and accept defeat.

Regardless of your opinion on who is right, the election clearly shows how divided our nation is...

The aftermath of this election may also increase conversation regarding issues pertaining to the election system, whether it be the Electoral College or alternate methods of voting like mail-in ballots. Evidenced by the entirety of this year, there is no doubt that there is a common interest at stake: the preservation of a comprehensive, dignified process of the election of the President of the United States.

“You’re going to see kids who are frustrated and others who are enthusiastic, but it’s not like much has changed since there’s much political division which is causing people to just hate, not listen. There’s always going to be issues that we want to fix and it’s up to us to solve it, not a 70+ year old man telling us what to do,” said sophomore Nikson Alex.

In these heated and deeply polarized times, it is more important than ever to remain open-minded and insightful of all opinions regarding the election, no matter how unintelligent, fundamentally corrupt, or deeply damaging the other side is perceived to be.

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