Election season is in full swing as candidates have kicked their campaigns into overdrive in the battle for electoral votes. But, this election, the candidates are less interesting compared to the broader principle they represent.

“The most important feature of America’s political landscape is a deep and growing ideological divide,” according to The Wall Street Journal.Part of that ideological divide involves a resurrection of an old political foe, socialism.

“Right now, we have socialism for the rich,” said Eric Winer, a supporter of senator Bernie Sanders. We want socialism for everyone,.

Forty-three percent of individuals under 30 hold a favorable view of socialism, according to a recent YouGov survey. According to the survey, the below 30 bracket is the only demographic to have supported socialism over capitalism by such margins (support for capitalism at 32 percent).

There is, however, a grave misunderstanding of what socialism is and the threat it poses to the divinely inspired Constitution of the United States.

The debate surrounding socialism today isn’t an overnight switch from a democratic-republic to socialism, but rather asks us to determine if we will take our final steps towards abandoning our divinely inspired Constitution in exchange for a system that misrepresents the role of the people, destroys the economy and removes liberty.

Many adherents to the socialism that Sanders and other politicians advocate, defend socialism by making the distinction of democratic socialism rather than traditional socialism.

It’s true there is a difference. In a democratic socialist society, the people vote for their leaders and policies. This sounds very much like an American ideal.

“Democratic socialism also says that the basic foundations of a society should be provided by the government, so that people of that state can have a happy, healthy life,” according to Modrn.TV.

A government where the people vote and receive countless free government benefits creates a utopian ideal that reflects much of what America already has: public libraries, public roads, emergency services and even Medicare and Medicaid.

Socialism assumes that the American people wouldn’t have access to these things without the government.

That idea is entirely false.

Before the encroachment of socialist ideals into American politics, the United States had those “public services,” but under private funding and donations.

“In Baltimore, Enoch Pratt provided both money and planning for a multi-branch public library,” according to Karl Zinemeister, vice president for publications at the Philanthropy Roundtable. “Andrew Carnegie created more than 2,500 libraries in towns and cities across the country.”

This forced charity and increase in government programs for the benefit of all, costs money and much more of it. An example of a socialist economic plan comes from Sanders.

His plan to employ free college tuition, rebuild economic infrastructure and provide jobs for underprivileged youth, costs over $1 trillion alone, according to berniesanders.com.

Funding for these programs and plans comes from higher taxation, focused mainly on the rich and big corporations.

Goodbye Apple©, goodbye Nike©, goodbye Microsoft©, goodbye Whole Foods© and every other massive corporation we rely on.

The government won’t close them; it won’t seem like it anyway. But, these are some of the massive corporations that will be heavily taxed and punished for their success in the name of charity.

Corporations and people can only be heavily taxed for so long before they are no longer motivated to be in business because their profits are taken and redistributed without their input. Under a democratic socialist system, the government won’t be funding any of these programs; they will instead be forcing and controlling charity.

In short, socialism assumes that the American people won’t employ charity on their own and thus, forces generosity while embittering those who would have been charitable of their own                  free will.

Additionally, spending under a democratic socialist system, fails in the long run as Greece and Venezuela have recently learned.

But, perhaps the most alarming aspect of democratic socialism is the gradual removal of freedom.

“Socialist governments traditionally do make a financial mess,” said Margaret Thatcher, Former Prime Minister of Great Britain. “They always run out of other people’s money. It’s quite a characteristic of them.”

And when the money dries up and people are no longer inspired by a system of forced charity, socialism steps in and removes the final tenant of the American Constitution, freedom of choice.

“Democracy and socialism have nothing in common but one word: equality,” said Alexis de Tocqueville, political writer and philosopher from the 1800s. “But notice the difference: while democracy seeks equality in liberty, socialism seeks equality in restraint and servitude.”

Any system that removes man’s personal liberty and freedom as socialism does, directly contrasts and opposes the Constitution of the United States.

Ronald Reagan said it best: “Socialism only works in two places: Heaven where they don’t need it and hell where they already have it.”