Throwing Your Vote Away
For decades now, the two major parties have told you that voting for a third party was effectively throwing away your vote. The reasoning was that the major party candidates were the only ones that stood a chance of winning, so voting for anyone else was a useless endeavor. Now that the major parties have produced two of the most horrible candidates, the old wisdom may need to be rethought.
Now, it is still extremely likely that one of those two candidates is going to be elected. Voting for a third party candidate won't change any of that. However, if enough people vote for those other parties, it may send a signal that the middle of the road voters are really tired of the extremists in the major parties getting their way.
Ultimately, that is the main issue with the major parties. Hard working, rational people don't have time to be actively involved in parties. This means that the parties are made up of a small part power-hungry politico and filled out with passionate morons. The politicos have found that they can really rouse the rabble with the stupidest of things and so that's what they do. Now both parties are facing major internal divisions and have chosen presidential candidates that worry pretty much everyone who isn't a die hard party member.
I do not belong to a party (my math is too good). There are some things the Republicans want to do that I may agree with, but their attachment to religious extremists keeps me from getting along with them. On the Democrat side, there are things that I like, but the communists and the social justice warriors are just as extreme as any Southern Baptist. That puts me in the middle, and pretty much in line with most Americans.
When this fall's election comes around, voting for one of the appointed Night Mares is the only real act of throwing your vote away. Instead, use your vote to shake up the major parties and see if we can't shake some of their nuts loose.