(Photo courtesy of CBS News)

By AMBER AINSWORTH, Editor-in-Chief

While sitting down to rewatch part of the presidential debate I missed last week, I had to shut the TV off.

I cannot take the election seriously, but it’s not a joke. “Horrific” is the only word I can think of to describe an election dictated by name-calling, fighting and social media wars.

My opinion of another candidate isn’t changed when their opponent insults them, though judging by the Twitter accounts of Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, campaign managers must think it works, .

I’m more baffled than anything, and last Monday’s debate only fuels my opinion that we are in grave danger. It’s not about “making America great again” or improving the nation; it’s about putting on a spectacle and getting the most attention.

And our attention is not where it should be. I half held onto a hope that when the candidates squared off, I would be better informed on their policies. Instead, I know even more dirt on both of them, including the tendencies to pathologically lie, as shown by debate fact-checkers.

With just over a month until ballots are cast, I can’t see it improving. Even worse, would an improvement matter?

This year’s election has been reduced to nothing more than a juvenile showdown.

As a first-time voter, it is troubling to imagine voting for people that spew hate and hurl insults like they are in high school, not competing to be president of the United States.

As educated as I am about the election, when it all boils down, I feel completely ignorant. And that is terrifying.

Both candidates have displayed an embarrassing childishness and performed a comedy act that didn’t produce laughs and won’t soon be forgotten.