Pop Culture: Voting off more than we can chew

Dennis Volkert

For those of us who can’t vote and?chew gum at the same time, there’s one product that’s bound to stick.

Bonus brand chewing gum has two types of “election gum” packages. Consumers can select between “Vote Democrat” and “Vote Republican” packaging.

This is presumably part of the Confectionery Polling movement that’s sweeping the nation.

The gum doesn’t come in Green?or Libertarian flavors. That’s apparently available only from?the Third Party Gum company.

I checked the Bonus gum Web site the other day to see how the poll was going, and the results were fairly even. It’s probably going to come down to the swing chewers.

The act of consuming Bonus gum does not actually make people vote for one candidate or the other. It does, however, give voters something to chew on.

The gum poll also does not determine the winner of the election. That’s up to the Supreme Court.

All in all, though, “Election Gum” is a fantastic idea. If voting were more like chewing gum, I bet more people would go to the polls. Either that, or they’d chew a lot less gum.

Perhaps gum could be engineered to influence our participation in the democratic process. Think how different political discussion would become.

“I don’t know why I even bother to chew gum. One brand’s no different than the other anymore.”

“My gum promised it would fix the economy, and now look where we are.”

Political campaigns themselves would start to see changes.

“I am not gum. If you wanted to run against gum, you should have run four years ago.”

“Four out of five dentists surveyed would recommend this candidate to their patients who chew gum.”

It’s too bad these “Chews or Lose” campaigns didn’t come about sooner. We missed out on some good headlines over the years, such as “Chewey Defeats Truman.” 

For now, at least we have the Bonus gum survey. If this idea catches on, it could work its way up the snack food chain, from gum and suckers to candy bars and soda, and finally, on to the Pennsylvania Avenue of munchies: Election Cheetos.?

That gets my vote.

Dennis Volkert is features editor at the Sturgis Journal. Contact him at