The Battle between Biden and Trump: How Social Control Strengthens As the 2020 Election Approaches
Updated: Oct 19, 2020
As the 2020 election is quickly approaching, it has become increasingly clear that the government has exerted their power to establish different forms of social control over who votes. Tampering a little with the voters is not something that is new, however, the 2020 election has seen a rise in lawsuits surrounding the election. For years the government has used voter identification laws to alter the demographic makeup of voters which vastly favor whites and leaves minorities at a disadvantage. Now, with the COVID-19 Pandemic restricting the public’s access to many activities, numerous polling facilities have been closed and we are seeing a rise in mail in votes. But for many who are not keeping up with the news surrounding the election, voting suppression, and recent court rulings, let’s dive a bit into how the election relates to social control.
The varying control theories of deviance believe that we, as individuals, conform to the rules of society because of the different social controls that stop us from behaving in a way that the government does not want us to. So, by having states change their voting rules back and forth during a time of great confusion and by allowing disinformation to spread like wildfire online, the government is controlling who is really showing up to vote. And it ends up being that people of color are the ones who are left at a disadvantage and are often denied during the absentee ballot process. This creates a huge problem for many of those who would want to vote in the first place and allows for a disproportionate number of White individuals to be able to vote.
If people continue to spread disinformation on social media, it could easily change the results of the election. As many people have been at home and spending more hours of their day scrolling on different social media platforms, it is increasingly easy for false information to spread like wildfire. At this stage, it has become clear to the public that a great deal of the information they are consuming was made to manipulate those who are voting and those that are not. Many different social media platforms are attempting to combat the spread of disinformation and have taken steps to alleviate that concern.
While reading this you may be asking yourself a number of questions: But isn’t voting something that everyone should be able to do? Why would people be spreading the wrong information about what dates to vote, who is eligible to vote, or when ballots must be mailed in by? Who would want to confuse the public when the election is important?
The answer is simple – If the government can manipulate the public and get them to believe information that is not correct when it comes to voting dates and general information, they can control who ends up voting. If the government possesses the power to control certain aspects of the election, they will use that to their advantage. In this case, it is the goal of the President and his reelection campaign to increase the number of individuals who are voting for him and limit the number of people who will/can vote for Joe Biden.
Social control is a very strong tool if utilized correctly and in the case of the 2020 Election, the government has exerted their control to suppress voters, spread misinformation, and restrict who has access to cast their votes.