Column: Snaps for Sanders

10-second clips become the new way to feel the Bern

It’s rare that a reporter like me writes an opinion piece, let alone a political one. To be frank, the majority of the time there isn’t much that warrants my opinion that hasn’t already been tweeted about in a more clever manner. But I am here, on behalf of my unlucky fellow students with prior commitments, to discuss the effect of watching the historic Bernie Sanders rally through the lenses of friends’ Snaptchats and how it completely trumps (no pun intended) major news outlets.

I made it just in time for a job interview when a friend texted, “Meet me at Bernie’s?” I wanted so badly to join my like-minded peers in what would be my first political rally, but my appointment was running late and “dead week” pressures loomed. I begrudgingly declined, but begged for a steady stream of Snapchats. If I couldn’t partake in one of the best-attended Big Sandy Superstore events in recent history, at least the entire evening was readily available on the app.

My crowd-phobia self cringed at the images of long lines wrapped around the venue, but when the Snapchats got closer and closer to Sanders’ podium (my friend somehow managed an impressive front-and-center position) it dawned that the insane mass of people all felt the same. Not only in their political beliefs were they similar, but the passion they felt for the Democratic candidate was palpable.

Ten-second video clips of the crowd’s excitement were truly joyful to watch and my comrades were all good enough not to use distorting filters! Snaps of Sanders, in his trademark “Church Grandfather” aura, greeting his supportive constituents were incredibly inspiring. Moving about the crowd like the rock star he knows he is, Sanders looked gleeful in many a-Snapchat story. 

As a long-time Snapchat advocate, it is an amazing thing to see my fellow Millennials embracing this form of communication. In a safer and more satisfying way than Tweets or Insta’s, they make vicarious living easy and accessible. In a personal sense, it eases my insane #FOMO (that’s Fear of Missing Out for non-“Broad City” fans) to see my best friend smiling from ear-to-ear, snapping, “Ya girl literally just felt the Bern… when Bernie shook my hand! He has my vote!”

Lukas can be contacted at [email protected].