If you are not a US voter – skip the next little bit. And, for your information – the US, unlike several countries, does not have mandatory voting.
Vote. Exercise your rights. Retain your ability to honestly be able to complain about the results, the laws, the politicians, the results. If you don’t play, you are still going to pay. It doesn’t matter if you vote by mail, by dropping off your ballot, by going into a poling location early, by showing up today. Vote. Be part of the solution. It does make a difference. Not voting negates the blood, sweat, and tears of women and men for decades who have fought for the right to have their voices heard, their votes counted.
There are too many people in the US who seem to feel that the presidential election is the only thing that matters. Not so – in reality, your state, county and local officials will have a major impact on your lives. They control local public services, oversee the police and fire departments, regulate the schools. All of those issues along with a myriad of others impact you, taxes, and your wallet.
California, this year, joined several other states in providing physical drop off/mail in ballots to all registered voters, Everyone in this household received their ballot, filled it out, All ballots were dropped off prior to today. Alameda County, California has a population of 1.7 million people, There are 66 drop off points (plus the Oakland Coliseum which was set up for massive in person voting as well as a drop off site). Harris County, Texas, population 4 Million + apparently believes that one (1) drop off location is enough. Hello?
Misinformation has been higher this year than any other. As one of those military members who voted by absentee ballot for decades, I thoroughly resent the implication of wide spread voter fraud. Stationed in Germany in the early 1980s along with 300,000+ other service members + families, it was just assumed that it was our right to vote. That our home states respected our right to vote. That our votes could be mailed in, that they would be counted. As the traditionally largest population of out of country voters, the states of Texas, North Carolina, Kentucky, Washington, Tennessee, Florida, California where the largest military bases were located welcomed our votes.
What is different now? One of my former lieutenants, who voted by absentee for years faced the challenge of being questioned when he retired and returned home. It took his birth certificate, his passport, his military ID to be allowed to register. Why? His skin is not white, he speaks with an accent. Apparently NY state doesn’t recognize Louisiana/Cajun as part of the US.
So, for those of you who are US – vote. Make your voice heard. No matter who you support remember that dignity and respect are the basis off all major faiths. Let us be civilized, not savages. We don’t eat our young, we don’t abandon our elderly.
And for the non-US reading this, thank you. Educate yourself on your own countries issues and exercise your voice when the next opportunity arrises.