NOTE: The pre-requisite warning before we go any further; I’m not a pundit, I’m not a political analyst, I’m Not a Republican, I’m not a Democrat, I’m a Registered Independent who supports both Liberal & Conservative causes, but I also happen to live in a Highly Liberal State. Furthermore, because I work at night I was only able to watch about 2/3rds of the Debate, so AT BEST this is really more of a First Impression/Snap Judgement/Scatterbrained kind of thing. As always, I ask that you bear with me here.
So…it happened…World War III took place on Monday. One side fought with Cannons, the other side fought with pea shooters, and Lester Holt did his best impression of Kevin Bacon at the end of Animal House. As promised, it was a shitstorm that all of America tuned in to see…and quite honestly, 75% of what I saw was hilarious. Between Trump constantly trying to interrupt HRC in a “Presidential” way, to HRC pretty much absorbing everything in the way that a Bear only gets angrier when you harm it, to Trump wishing he took that extra dose of NyQuil before the debate (#TrumpSniffles), There was something for everybody……But at the risk of being redundant, I’m actually NOT going to talk about what they were talking about (Because, quite honestly, more qualified people are capable of doing that & there was just Too much to look over on a lack of sleep). Instead, I want to jump to the conclusion.
As I mentioned, I had to stream the debate—Largely because I was in the middle of the Night shift, and there wasn’t a working TV nearby. Fortunately, the kind of work I do for a living is very Social Media heavy, so thanks to about 82 different live feeds, I was able to watch as much as I could on Facebook. And if ever there was a barometer of how millennials would react to what they were watching, Facebook’s feeds of the News Networks might very well be a litmus test for things to come. In an effort to keep things unbiased, I switched to different feeds every 10 minutes, and there was one very stark trend that I noticed on all but One of these feeds. As some of you know, whenever you watch live video of Facebook these days, you’ll see a continuous “flow” of the “Reaction” icons they have. Y’know, These things…
As I was flipping between feeds both locally and Nationally, I noticed that every time Hillary spoke, there was a constant flow of the “Thumbs Up” and “Heart” icons, with maybe a sprinkle of the “Angry” icon. Whenever Trump spoke, sure enough it was all “Angry” all the time with barely a like/love to be seen, and maybe a couple “Sad” icons as well. Of course, that’s how it was on about 99% of the feeds I was watching. The sole holdout was—you guessed it—Fox News which had it trending in the other direction; Hillary getting the anger (and even a few “Haha” icons), while Trump gets more Hearts than Thumbs. So with that said, why do I feel that social media will have decided this election for us? Simply put, it’s the Millennial vote That’s gonna turn things in Hillary’s favor. It doesn’t matter which state you’re in or if that state is one that “Swings”, but rather how young, influenced and devoid of apathy these particular voters are. It can only be assumed that the people who were watching the debates on the various facebook feeds were indeed millennials; and with an average of about 10,000 views per feed watching, and those same people reacting the way that they did to what they saw, it’s not a 100% foregone conclusion that Millennials will Vote for Hillary, but it certainly lays down a foundation for even the most out-of-the-loop political novice to think so as well. At the end of the day, it doesn’t really matter if both candidates are “Corrupt”, or if one lies more than the other—at the end of the day, it boils down to restoring our sanity.
Aside from that, The one person who I actually felt sorry for through the whole thing was NBC’s Lester Holt—who moderated the debate. Granted, he did have a couple of moments where he was able to fact check Trump just fine; but at the end of the day, Holt was given a chore that not even Hercules would be able to cross off his list—trying to get Donald Trump to shut up without the use of Tranquilizer Darts or a Stun Gun. Holt is certainly one of the better oratory news anchors of the past few years, but for handling something this volatile, they probably should’ve asked Jon Stewart to moderate instead…but NO, he has to take care of animals on his farm in New Jersey.
There’s 2 & ½ more of these debates to go (The half obviously going to the VPs), there’s a lot to muddle through, and hopefully if time isn’t too crunched up, I hope to be more detailed next time. Otherwise, I think it’s safe to say this was a legitimate sequel to Nixon/Kennedy; HRC was calm/composed (or at least by Her standards, anyway), Trump was Nervous, Choking, Sniffling, Flop sweating and not unlike Ron Burgundy, he would probably do better if there was a Teleprompter in front of him. Also, not unlike Nixon/Kennedy where TV Viewers thought Kennedy Won while Radio Listeners rooted for Nixon; here, People who watched on a “Second Screen” (I.e. Facebook, Tablet/smartphones, etc.) thought Hillary won while the TV viewers thought Trump won…To that, I say “Welcome to the Paradigm Shift”.