“Should things go wrong at any time, the people will set them to rights by the peaceable exercise of their elective rights. ” – Thomas Jefferson
It is common to be apathetic, to disagree or even be disgusted by our elected officials. This anger and distrust of our system comes from the perceived dissolution of the consent of the governed. Our rules have not changed, and our voting methods have only advanced to increase fairness, it is not the state but each and every citizen who has the power to change what we determine as ‘wrong.’ We are the same American electorate that elected Abraham Lincoln, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy, Barack Obama. We have created change, and we have the power to create that change again, we just have to believe in our own ability to make a difference. The best difference between our electorate and that of President Lincoln’s is that this time (thank goodness) we are not all white male property owners. Just five years before
President Lincoln was elected, a literacy test was adopted into the voting process, deliberately discriminating against Irish-Catholic immigrants. Today, we are lucky. Arguably our great country is not perfect, but we have the ability to make it so. If you are a woman, you have no excuse, it is your responsibility to vote. Women died for the passage of the 19th amendment in 1920, guaranteeing women’s suffrage. Exercise your right, write in your own name for goodness sake, just VOTE.
Passion for what you believe can be rooted in a great number of things. If you believe in something, you must fight for it. The greatest opportunity you have as a citizen to express your passion is in the voting booth. You aren’t just voting for the next president as well, do your local election research because grassroots politics affects you on a day-to-day basis more than you can imagine.
Apathy, or the belief that our efforts will have little to no effect on an outcome, is widely shared among the American electorate. We see a big change like Obama’s affordable care act, and we wonder what affect it will have on us that we will actually see. Change that we can see is filtered through our local politicians, Congressman, Senators, and delegates who have a voice in who becomes the next president and ultimately who will have the majority in congress.
So if you are thinking of rescinding your right to vote, perhaps considering that your vote will not count and just leaving it up to everyone else to pick your next president, think again. Every vote is counted, every vote has been fought for, and every vote is important.
See you on election day!
To register to vote – visit http://www.dmv.state.va.us/webdoc/general/vote.asp