You may have seen the bumper sticker, “Any Functioning Adult 2020.” This is because the current administration has proven that political experience — or any leadership skill like integrity or a brain — is no longer needed to be the president.
While it seems that any alteration to the current state would be a great improvement, holding a president-to-be to a higher standard than the last four years is necessary. Thus, I present to you four functioning adults who have no true political experience, but might surprise you with their ability to revive a wilting nation.
1. Megan Rapinoe
You may know her as the pink-haired woman on the United States women’s national soccer team, but I promise there is more to her than that. Megan Rapinoe has the right to the presidency on her sheer athleticism alone.
While she was busy being captain of the USWNT, leading her team to win the World Cup last summer and winning both the Golden Boot as the tournament’s top goal scorer and the Golden Ball as its best player, Rapinoe was also making time to fight for what she believed in — even if this meant aggressively addressing the president of the United States and making him quake in his kid-sized golf shoes.
By preemptively and publicly refusing to visit the White House before the USWNT had even won the World Cup, Rapinoe established herself as a brave and influential political icon. From her outspokenness on LGBTQ+ rights to her role in the USWNT’s fight for equal pay to her status as one of the few white athletes joining Colin Kaepernick by kneeling during the National Anthem, Rapinoe has used her platform as a superstar athlete to stand up for those who have been oppressed, marginalized and voiceless for centuries.
With Rapinoe as president, our nation would get a three-for-one deal. Not only would she be the first female commander in chief, but her mix of sports leadership and social awareness would provide the country with someone who knows how to fight with everything she has for the people who need it most. The bonus? She would inspire a lot more people to rock fun colored hair.
2. Bill Nye the Science Guy
Any college-age person knows Bill Nye the Science Guy as the dorky yet endearing dude that used to show up on elementary school TV, yelling about science and making things explode. But what some may not realize is that Nye actually knows his stuff, and he continues to be a prominent advocate for science, education and the environment.
Accumulating numerous science-related awards, including the Humanist of the Year Award from the American Humanist Society in 2010, as well as co-chairing the March for Science, Nye has transitioned from his exclamation of “science rules!” to a more serious claim: “Science is political.” Time and time again, Nye reminds the public that not only is the promotion of science embedded in the constitution, but it is undeniably intertwined with our social and political decisions.
Nye expressed his fear for the health of the planet in an interview with Rolling Stone. Examining the current U.S. administration’s stance on climate change, the scientist explained how dangerous it is for the president to deny humankind’s impact on the environment.
“Well, it’s irresponsible and very troubling. You know, people talk about this all the time. It would be silly and laughable if it weren’t so serious. We in science education hope that cooler heads prevail sooner than later,” said Nye. “[The president] thinks that he’s an expert on everything and it’s reflected in his public statements. It’s not controversial to say he’s just wrong about that. He’s not an expert on climate.”
These statements prove Nye’s honesty and intelligence — two crucial leadership traits that have been absent from the White House since 2016. With Nye as president, the climate crisis and education would be taken more seriously. As someone in constant pursuit of the truth, Bill Nye the Science Guy has the potential to save the world, teach us a little something along the way and make some things explode.
3. Amy Schumer
Next is the unabashed Amy Schumer, a comedian who not only uses humor to make people laugh at the shocking and ugly truths of life, but also uses her celebrity platform as a way to bring awareness and change to those same truths. While a lot of her skits involve talking openly about her sex life and the current state of her lady parts, she has also managed to consistently speak louder about her political views.
Her show “Inside Amy Schumer” is filled with feminist and liberal satire, where she makes fun of sexism, critiques gun violence and artfully balances the seriousness of certain social issues with the humor her career is built upon. Schumer has ensured that every aspect of her life is used to make positive changes in the world — from using her wedding to ask for donations for Every Town for Gun Safety to announcing her pregnancy in a list of politicians she endorses.
Perhaps Schumer’s most important asset is her ability to stay true to herself while others tear her down. While some might take to posting angry tweets at 2 a.m., Schumer stays clear-headed and unapologetic. She pushes political boundaries through her work and isn’t scared to lose a few fans in the process.
As cliche as it might sound, Beyoncé has the potential to wreak havoc in the political field. While the Beyhive needs no convincing that the star deserves a seat in the Oval Office, others may not be so ready to hop on the “Beyoncé for Prez” bandwagon. But aside from her overwhelming success as a performer, Beyoncé has proven herself as a political figure throughout her career.
For starters, the star is a proud feminist whose goal has always been to empower women. Looking back at her work shows a wide range of songs about strong females, including “We Run the World (Girls)” and “All the Single Ladies.”
In her 2014 performance at the VMA’s, Beyoncé included excerpts from author and women’s rights activist Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, critiquing the sexist and oppressive ideologies that women have faced for centuries. No matter what your opinion is on her music, it is clear that Beyoncé creates her work in hopes of inspiring positive change.
However, since the release of her single “Formation” in 2016, Beyoncé has taken on a new role in politics. Her fight against police brutality and for the well-being of Black lives has grown exponentially; in the past month she has not only released both a track and an album celebrating the Black Lives Matter movement, but she has also written a public letter demanding justice for Breonna Taylor and, to top it off, received a BET Humanitarian Award presented by Michelle Obama herself.
With all of this and more, there’s no question that Beyoncé would be a major upgrade to the presidency. And imagining Jay-Z and Blue Ivy in the White House seems like a dream come true. But at the end of the day, no matter if these celebrities inspire you or infuriate you, all that matters is that you cast a vote in the upcoming election. There are plenty of functioning adults in America, and the only way to get one into the White House is to stay informed, stay hopeful and let your voice be heard.