I normally don’t talk politics, but I feel compelled to write a little something from a little ordeal I encountered.
Yesterday, I woke up early to vote in my city’s and county’s elections. I had to go to two places to cast my ballots. One, at City Hall. Two, at the American Legion. It was kind of strange because that’s never happened before. It was kind of an inconvenience, which wouldn’t be a big deal if I hadn’t had to be at work early in the morning. After voting, I talked to my sister-in-law about the whole ordeal. Somehow, it turned into a conversation about how inconvenient voting can be for some people; that some demographics are discouraged to vote, that some people don’t even bother to vote.
So, what’s the point? It’s this: no matter how inconvenient, I still had a responsibility to fulfill my civil liberties and make my voice heard. My mom makes a big deal about voting, regardless if it’s a national election or local. She harps on me about the sacrifices leaders made to ensure everyone was given an opportunity to make their voice heard. I guess all that “spirit” has rubbed off on me because I post on my News Feed on Facebook whenever there is an election. I believe everyone has a responsibility to voice what they feel is the right thing to do and what candidate is right for the job.
But I can understand why some people are hesitant about casting their ballots. They may feel their voice does not matter; that it’s nothing more than a popularity contest and that the candidates have their own agenda that they’re willing to thrust upon them. For example, take Obama’s first presidential campaign. He promised change, whatever that means to him. But most people were enthralled at the fact Obama was the first black presidential candidate and that he might make history as the first black President. I think we quickly forget that presidents before him made history not because of who they were, but for what they stood for. And we are quick to throw out the “impeachment” card whenever someone in a position of power does something the general public doesn’t like. And while some of his actions warrant such reactions from rallies to picket lines, I think we need to remember that this country, or any country, wasn’t born in a day and that mistakes started with a tiny snowball. Unfortunately, every leader moving forward is going to be correcting the errors of previous administrations. That’s the way of the world, as much as we don’t want it to be.
This is why voting is so important. If we don’t give our two cents on who we feel is the best candidate for the job, how will candidates know that there are people who believe in him? So, we need to choose who we believe is the most qualified candidate for the job, and–as hard as it is–be patient. Now, will the person we choose make it? Maybe, maybe not. But as long as we make our voice heard, we can at least take comfort in the fact that we tried.