By Raygan Lopez
Other than the Inauguration Day “meme” of Bernie Sanders that went viral on the internet, there are multiple reasons why we all should love Sanders. Not only did Sanders effortlessly make a funny meme, but he made it into a sweatshirt. The sweatshirt sold out immediately after launching in which Sanders donated all proceeds to Meals on Wheels Vermont. Bernie Sanders was made into a viral meme largely because meme generations love him so much.
In 2010, Sanders spoke on the Senate floor for eight hours straight in attempts to undo tax breaks for the rich. In order to get money out of politics, he is pushing campaign finance reform that would ban corporate contributions and cap individual donations at $500. Sanders’ efforts to take money out of politics did not go unnoticed by Generation Z and the working class. Sanders has been pushing for these same reforms tirelessly for 40 years.
Those with a net worth of over $32 million would have a tax implemented in which they would be annually taxed and stronger policies would ensure the wealthy would not be able to evade those taxes. Gen Z has brought widespread media attention to the amount of taxes the wealthy pay in hopes those in power would do something about it.
Bernie Sanders is favored by young adults and many others due to these efforts. Higher taxes for the wealthy, four years of tuition-free public college, raising the minimum wage and universal healthcare gained Sanders the attention of those who work everyday jobs. Along with the efforts to achieve tuition-free college, Sanders called for eliminating all student loan debt within the country, catching the attention of college students and of course those adults with student loan debt.
When Twitter found and resurfaced images of Bernie Sanders being arrested in the 60s for protesting for civil rights, this encouraged people of color to participate in the Black Lives Matter protests in May. Sanders’ focus on racial justice includes fixing a broken criminal justice system and addressing economic, educational, health and environmental disparities in colored and Native American communities.
Sanders doesn’t refer to himself as a Democrat or a Republican but is self-described as a Democratic Socialist and an independent member. Generally, socialists don’t support capitalism but also believe socialism is achieved democratically. His brand of Democratic Socialism does not aim to eliminate capitalism but wants to reform the system in a way that serves working people and not the super-rich. He isn’t a communist, despite what people say. Regardless of picking one party or the other, Bernie Sanders is known for being for the people, which is crucial for political figures.