On this weekend before the election, I challenge you to accumulate all the knowledge you can. I challenge you to go into the voting booth with more of an understanding of the issues than you might have today. I challenge you to know more about the candidates and their positions than you know right now. There are a series of documentaries that have been released online that can help you start this knowledge crunching weekend.
The first is ‘Before the Flood’. This documentary on climate change is a combination of dire and optimistic, but the most important thing about it is it takes you to the source of the issue. You travel to India, China, Greenland, Florida, and many other nations with Leonardo DiCaprio. You listen to the stories from people on the ground and climate scientists that have been studying the effect of fossil fuels for decades.
There is plenty of reiterated discussion about how climate change works and the science behind it, but I hope most people know this stuff. What feels new in this documentary is the direct contact with how climate change is affecting human beings and animals. We see the Antarctic and all of the millions of gallons of melted ice flowing into the ocean. We see the dead and dying coral reefs. We see the Indian farms completely drowned from an entire years worth of rain in 5 hours.
The bottom line with ‘Before the Flood’ is that it puts you into the middle of the issue. It shows you the ramifications of our actions and what we can do to fix it. ‘Michael Moore in Trumpland’ is sort of the opposite. It doesn’t take you anywhere. It just asks you to think about the political candidates running for president under a different light. It will also provide a bit of levity after the dire ‘Before the Flood’.
In ‘Trumpland’, Michael Moore puts on a one man show in front of a town full of Trump supporters. There are a lot of Moore fans as well, but his intention is to provide this audience a look at the other side. He covers some issues like health care, but mostly he covers the candidates and the world with them in office.
After a few minutes of general comedy, he digs into Trump a bit. He gives us some hypothetical future videos and cracks at Trumps knowledge. He provides a history of his political views and how he has been opposed to many things the Clinton’s have done for years. Then he starts talking about Hillary and her career. He gives her a fair shake and tries to illuminate what all she has done for us.
One of the best sections is him showing how unfair we have been to her. He chronicles her fight for universal health care and the sexist way our government treated her. He covers the Clinton sex scandal and how terrible the media treated her. And he uses these to talk about how different a world we might have if we had listened to Hillary and done some of the things she was fighting for. It’s a plea for an understanding of what she could do for this country and she could provide some of the change we need.
Both of these movies are educational in their own way. Both cover important issues that are on the ballot next Tuesday. You may not agree with everything, but you will step into this election with more knowledge and be entertained doing it. I highly recommend you do so.