by Nick Linger
With the recent DVD release of The Purge: Election Year coinciding with both the 2016 Presidential Election and Halloween, it seemed like the perfect time to dive into the themes that exist in our current reality and those reflected in The Purge series. While some can legitimately say that an annual event like The Purge would be an extreme notion in our Democratic society (they are right in terms of the event being extreme), under the right combination of polarized politics, increased levels of class “warfare,” corruption, and elitism, an event like The Purge isn’t just a possibility but a real likelihood.
In Election Year, the New Founding Fathers hold a “ritualistic” ceremony in which they commit murder in the vein of false spiritual dogmas and Democracy. These ceremonies are no different from the pagan and Satanic cultic rituals that were practiced over the past millennium. By no means am I calling our officials cultists or Satanists but they have clearly demonstrated (as a collective) that they don’t care very much about promoting the general welfare or helping further form a perfect Union for the American public. Let us remember that Congressional officials are first and foremost public civil servants. So Constitutionally, they are bound to uphold the law provided and structured by the Original Founding Fathers. Now given the fact that times would evolve beyond the lifespan of the Founding Fathers, the Constitution was structured to give future generations of Congress enough room to make appropriate amendments with specific procedures. However, what the scenarios depicted in Election Year show us what could happen if we the people essentially gave up our voting power and allowed a single new law to dictate how we interact with one another.
For one reason or another, we as the voting majority have allowed ourselves to become complacent and distracted from what’s going on in our political system. Just like in the films, the average American citizen is more preoccupied with being able to purge as an “American right” than taking the time to understand how The Purge came to be under the New Founding Fathers and accepting it as law.
Now, I’m not saying that to be cynical. In fact, the fear that drives that film series is the direction that we, as a society, are going due to our broken and semi-eroding political system. While most of our publicly elected officials have sizable parts to play in the sheer scale of the corruption that has plagued our political systems for decades, we as a majority voting populous cannot escape our share of the blame for helping create the conditions that would help bring a notion like The Purge into reality. Our elected officials have been allowed by the voting populous to continue acting irresponsibly against the interest of the American people because majority of voters aren’t going out to vote for their replacements.
Our Constitution states:
“We the People of the United States, in order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, ensure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”
Everyone can agree that even if the Purge series isn’t a horror movie, the undertones and nuanced realities that drive the movies ARE indeed terrifying. We, the voting American public, and our government officials have failed in the intent to uphold the Preamble. Every election cycle we keep hearing how “this election is too important to ignore” and, while some cycles have proven this notion false, I believe that this current election is that important. Not necessarily because of our “chosen” partisan candidates but because WE THE PEOPLE have accepted the choices presented to us rather than exercising our democratic right to vote for something different beyond the choices placed in front of us.